Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Wonderful “The Color Purple” Scores $18.15 Million Opening Day, Debuts at Number 1 with Biggest Holiday Hit Since 2009


“The Color Purple” opened at number 1 yesterday by a wide margin.

The tremendous reimagining of the Steven Spielberg classic film scored $18.15 million on Christmas Day and won the box office. It was the biggest Christmas Day opening since 2009 and the 2nd biggest of all time.

What a triumph! I told you this film was going to be big and that its cast and director for headed for a lot of awards.

The huge box office comes from a ton of promotion helped by Oprah Winfrey, “The View” host Whoopi Goldberg (who starred in the original film), and lots of media including a big appearance on The Jennifer Hudson talk show.

Early reviews were incredibly enthusiastic, as well. Yesterday’s showings proved them right as Cinemascore gives “The Color Purple” an A from first day audiences. Warner’s says the audience was 65% African American. Atlanta led the way among urban locations, followed by New York, LA, Chicago, and Washington DC. When word spreads the film should “cross over” into other audiences, too.

The box office win also means that Warner Bros. has the numbers 1, 2, and 3 movies on Christmas Day with “Color Purple,” “Aquaman 2,” and “Wonka.”

The other new Christmas films — “The Boys in the Boat” and “Ferrari” — came in at less thrilling numbers 4 and 6. Of the two, “Boys” has a chance of capturing family audiences this week.

For “The Color Purple,” opening day is really exciting. Stars Fantasia, Taraji P. Henson, Danielle Brooks, Colman Domingo, Corey Hawkins et al, led by director Blitz Bazawule now get a huge boost for the Oscars and SAG Awards. They are absolutely headed to Best Ensemble at SAG and a Best Picture nomination from the Oscars. The actors should all make it in easily.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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