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China’s ‘Yolo’ Busts Out Oscar Weekend, With ‘Love Lies Bleeding’; ‘The Taste of Things’ At $2.7M – Specialty Box Office

Chinese comedy drama YOLO from Sony Pictures International had a yodeling good domestic debut, grossing $840k on 200 screens, making no. 9 on the weekend top 10. Directed and produced by and starring China’s top grossing female helmer, Jia Ling, it’s earned close to $482 million in China since opening Feb. 10 — and was the highest-grossing film over the Lunar New Year holiday.

The film follows Le Ying (Jia Ling), an unemployed woman in her 30s who still lives with her parents until one day she meets a boxing coach (Lei Jiayin) who may change her life. Produced by New Classics Pictures, Big Bowl Entertainment

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Also new, A24’s Love Lies Bleeding by Rose Glass brought the highest per screen average of the weekend and one of the best limited openings of the year. The crime thriller starring Kristen Stewart and Katy O’Brian, with Ed Harris, Dave Franco, Anna Baryshnikov and Jena Malone, grossed  $167.5k on five screens in NY/LA for a per screen average of $33.5k. Moderate nationwide expansion to 1,200 theaters next weekend.

New release Accidental Texan from Roadside Attractions grossed an estimated: $141,270 on 134 screens.

Oscar-nominated holdovers: Searchlight Pictures’ Poor Things saw $300k on 700 screens for a domestic cume of $34 million. Also up for nods: The Zone Of Interest has a domestic cume of $8.158 million after a $195k weekend on 534 screens. Neon’s Perfect Days by Wim Wenders saw $300k on 240 screens in week five for a cume of $2.7 million.

A nod to Tran Anh Hung’s The Taste of Things, which continues a solid run at $2.7 million since revving up Valentines Day, “happily exceeding our expectations,” said Scott Shooman, head of film for IFC parent AMC.. “Expectations now are really tough to gauge post COVID. But … it’s really a special movie. I think you have to make everything an event now. And I think we succeeded [activations with Bon Apetit and restaurants in NY and LA]. And I think the box office shows that people absolutely love the film.”

It’s mostly but not exclusively an older audience. “Food is universal, whether you’re 70 or 17, most people try to eat three times a day, and I think that’s one of the things that you find, a connection point.”

“What emerges after you’ve seen the film is just a joy of film. I think it’s a hard world out there. And if we can make people feel amazing after they walk out of a movie, it’s great to make a connection point of love and food,” he said.

The Taste of Things was France’s Oscar selection (over Anatomy Of A Fall) to the surprise and ire of some, especially after It wasn’t nominated, cutting France out of the running for Best International Feature.

“We bought the film because we love the film. We didn’t buy the film to win an Academy Award,” Shooman said. “It had to be one or the other … That’s the system. And we think that France chose a terrific movie. We think that’s reflected in how it’s performed … I think The Taste Of Things is a lovely movie. I think Anatomy is a terrific movie.”

Lastly, noting a rare entrance into the weekend top 10 for a Fathom Met Opera — La Forza Del Destino saw $768k on 730 screens.

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