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Best Picture Winner ‘Moonlight’ to Expand to 1,500 U.S. Locations

Variety logo Variety 3/1/2017 Dave McNary
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A24 is nearly tripling the domestic run of “Moonlight” following its best picture Academy Award with the coming-of-age drama going into at least 1,500 theaters.

“Moonlight” played at 585 sites during the Feb. 24-26 weekend and grossed $591,201 in its 19th weekend, lifting the cumulative total to $22.1 million. The expansion will put “Moonlight” at its widest release, which previously had been 1,104 locations during the Jan. 27-29 weekend following the film’s eight Academy Award nominations.

Open Road expanded “Spotlight” from 685 to 1,227 sites last year following its best picture award. It took in $1.8 million in its 18th weekend to move its total gross to $41.6 million and wound up its run two months later with $45 million.

“Moonlight” became available on DVD and Blu-ray on Tuesday. The movie stars best supporting actor winner Mahershala Ali along with Naomie Harris, Janelle Monae, Trevante Rhodes, Ashton Sanders, and Alex R. Hibbert.

“La La Land” was erroneously named best picture on Sunday by Faye Dunaway due to PriceWaterhouseCooper accountant Brian Cullinan having given co-presenter Warren Beatty the wrong envelope. Three minutes later, after producers made their acceptance speeches, “La La Land” producer Jordan Horowitz announced that “Moonlight” had actually won best picture and that the wrong envelope had been given to the presenters.

“Moonlight” opened Oct. 21 and generated an impressive $402,075 at four sites in its opening weekend.

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