“Brokeback” to debut in Nashville on December 30

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Revealing yet again how malleable the release schedule is for this season’s most talked about film, Focus Features has bumped the release of the Ang Lee epic, “ Brokeback Mountain,” up to Friday, December 30.

To the dismay of many gay Americans following months of relentless hype, the film debuted in only three cities on its opening day, December 9.

While it made an astounding $544,549 on a total of five screens in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco (by comparison, America’s tenth most popular movie that weekend, “Rent,” brought in only 2 million dollars), as recently as a week earlier it appeared the film would open nationwide on that date.

Reviews ran in all of the major national newsweeklies in advance of the December 9 “limited release” 3-city opening. Entertainment Weekly gave its cover to the film’s stars, Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal. At the time, gossip began to circulate that the movie would open in only the nation’s largest markets.

As recently as only a few days ago, O&AN published on this website the announcement that the film would open here on January 6. The continued success of the movie has prompted a new release schedule. In its second week of release, the film earned $2.5 million from only 69 screens in the nation’s largest markets. Including all movies in theaters across America, it was the 8 th highest attended film that weekend.

As of this writing, Fandango, the popular online ticket seller and information source for filmgoers, is selling advance tickets for the Green Hills Regal cinemas showing of the award winning film. Here’s a link: http://www.fandango.com/MoviePage.aspx?date=12/30/2005&mid=86041&source=moviesearch

Focus’ President of Distribution Jack Foley said, in an article at www.boxofficemojo.com, that his company was particularly pleased with the results it received from a couple conservative test markets where the film played in its second week of release. He said “[the movie] is playing to the smart set, as well as the boomer set, the senior set and the gay community.”