Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite is a hit in the U.S. A record-breaking, specialty box office-shattering hit. Over the weekend, the Palme d’Or winning film opened in the U.S. in just three theaters in New York and Los Angeles, but managed to cull $376,264. Its $125,421 per-theater average set new records—it’s the best per-screen haul since La La Land, as well as the biggest per-screen haul of any international film opening Stateside.
The film—a dark, slickly crafted drama about a poor family scamming a rich family—opened in the Landmark and Arclight Hollywood in Los Angeles, and at the IFC Center in New York, where it played to sold-out screenings in its opening weekend. Nearly every Monday screening is currently sold out as well at the IFC, where it is being screened every hour from 10:35 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. local time.
Parasite debuted at the Cannes Film Festival in May, earning a lengthy standing ovation and rapturous reviews. It went on to win the top prize, the Palme d’Or, a first for a South Korean filmmaker. One month later, the film opened in South Korea and netted an impressive $24.5 million haul. It went on to set a box office record in a little over a week, becoming the third-highest grossing film of the year in the country, brushing past Captain Marvel and settling right behind Avengers: Endgame South Korea’s own Extreme Job. It has since grossed $70 million in the country alone.
The film, backed by distributor Neon, is expected to be a strong Oscar contender in a slew of categories, including best international feature film, best picture, and best director. Though he’s a globally recognized auteur with a number of celebrated films under his belt, Bong has yet to be nominated for an Oscar. In a recent interview with Vanity Fair, he remained mellow about the upcoming awards campaign that will stretch from now until next February, noting that it’s his “first time experiencing it, so I’m just trying to have fun. It feels very unfamiliar.”
The movie will expand to more theaters and cities in the US next week.
source: NEON & Vanity Fair