“The French Dispatch” by Wes Anderson in theaters – Specialized preview – Deadline
After a long delay from Covid, The French dispatch opens this weekend with distributor Searchlight Pictures and industry hoping Wes Anderson’s whimsical flick brings a touch of Grand Budapest Hotel-ish piece at the specialized box office.
Hopefully, but not counting, as the box office overtakes studio tents has been largely austere and stubbornly unpredictable. The French dispatch debuts in 52 theaters and 14 markets in a crowded area, including the pop culture phenomenon called Dune.
Projector acquired The French dispatch in September 2019 and it was to have played in Cannes canceled by Covid in 2020. It was instead presented on the Croisette this year, then screened at the BFI London Film Festival, Telluride, the New York Film Festival – reaching 25 festivals in all.
Anderson’s tenth movie – full name The French Liberty dispatch, Kansas Evening Sun – brings to life a collection of stories from the latest issue of an American magazine published in a fictional 20th century French town. With Benicio del Toro, Adrien Brody, Tilda Swinton, Léa Seydoux, Frances McDormand, Timothée Chalamet, Lyna Khoudri, Jeffrey Wright, Mathieu Amalric, Stephen Park, Bill Murray and Owen Wilson. It is written and produced by Anderson with Steven Rales and Jeremy Dawson from a story he conceived with Roman Coppola, Hugo Guinness and Jason Schwartzman.
“The film appeals to arthouse fans of all ages and, of course, fans of Wes Anderson and the New Yorker,” Searchlight said. Stylized versions of the magazine’s editors, writers, and stories populate the film.
Deadline’s review says, “If Anthony Lane doesn’t like him, there will be a price to pay. Searchlight Pictures probably shouldn’t even bother releasing it in the Red States, except maybe Austin.
Cities include Austin as well as NY, LA, Philadelphia, Washington DC, Boston, Denver, San Francisco, Portland Ore. Toronto, Vancouver, Seattle, Phoenix and Chicago. Searchlight organizes regional promotional screenings in the top 40 markets targeting major print, radio, TV and online media.
“Due to the nature of cinema in recent months, this will not reach the gross levels of Grand Budapest Hotel Where Moonrise Kingdom . However, the reviews are mostly good and there is an audience that wants to get out of the house, and maybe the movie will do it, ”said Frank Rodriguez, General Sales Manager of Searchlight. “For me, there is not that much difference between Moonrise Kingdom, Grand Hotel Budapest and that. Wes Anderson makes a certain type of movie. Very dense, very humorous, very meticulous, with stories and characters that do good.
Rodriguez recalled that well decorated Budapest hotel grossed over $ 200,000 per screen at four theaters on its opening weekend. It was a surprise even then – and two or three more zeros than most specialty openings per screen this year.
Rodriguez said Searchlight carefully selected the first generation of theaters, a mix of arthouse, upscale urban and suburban multiplexes and as “the best hipster theaters in the country.” He and other specialist distributors have noted a sharp drop in the number of openings per screen from the top 40 to 60 theaters to the last 200. French expedition Expands next week to over 500 theaters in over 60 markets and will add to that on the weekend of 5/11.
Essay audiences tend to be older and slower to return to theaters, although No time to die seems to have drawn the demo to theaters in greater numbers since Covid. Anderson’s fantasy films also appeal to younger audiences. “I think the bottom line for us in terms of what will make a successful opening is for the specialist audience to return to theaters in numbers that look like they used to be,” Rodriguez said. A tall order, but it has to happen eventually, right?
Searchlight’s media campaign balances traditional and digital media including national television, national and local public radio including podcasts, high impact outdoor advertising and digital including Apple News, Conde Nast, Flipboard, The New York Times, Hulu, Roku, YouTube, IMDb, Fandango, Rotten Tomatoes, Letterboxd, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and TikTok. Creative partnerships include Accidentally Wes Anderson, the fansite with 1.5 million followers. The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) and the American Cinematheque both host retrospectives. Iconic downtown Manhattan department store, Bergdorf Goodman, features storefront and promotions; the Casa Magazines stand in Greenwich Village has been renamed for the opening weekend; and Flying Coffee created a special branded French roast for the film.
French expedition trailer here:
Also opening: Picturehouse presents National Geographic Documentary Films’ Become Cousteau to over 300 screens in over 50 markets. Directed by Liz Garbus, the film follows legendary ocean explorer, inventor, filmmaker, author, unlikely celebrity and environmentalist Jacques-Yves Cousteau, whose life and legacy have become synonymous with a love of science and the natural world. The film debuted in Telluride. This is a 100% certified fresh from Rotten Tomatoes with reviews. Review the deadline here.
Produced by Garbus, Dan Cogan, Mridu Chandra, Evan Hayes. Executive produced by Julie Gaither, Carolyn Bernstein, Ryan Harrington.
Netflix puts Jeymes Samuel’s new school in western The more they fall in roughly 600 U.S. theaters / 141 markets ahead of its Nov. 3 debut on the streamer. Starring Jonathan Majors, Zazie Beetz, Delroy Lindo, LaKeith Stanfield, Danielle Deadwyler, Edi Gathegi, RJ Cyler, Damon Wayans Jr., Deon Cole, Regina King and Idris Elba. Written by Samuel and Boaz Yakin, produced by Shawn Carter, James Lassiter, Lawrence Bender and Samuel. When outlaw Nat Love (Majors) finds out that enemy Rufus Buck (Elba) is released from prison, he assembles his gang for revenge. See the review for the deadline. The film had its world premiere in August when the London Film Festival opened.
The limited Amazon version of Will Sharpe Louis Wain’s electric life with Benedict Cumberbatch, Claire Foy, Andrea Riseborough. The true story of eccentric British artist Louis Wain, whose psychedelic and playful imagery forever transformed the public’s perception of cats. Set in the early 1900s, we follow Wain as he seeks to unravel the “electric” mysteries of the world, and in doing so, gain a better understanding of his own life and the love he shared with his wife. Telluride Deadline Review. Airing on November 5.
Learning to live together: the return of the madmen and the English by Abramorama, directed and produced by Jesse Lauter. Joe Cocker’s legendary Mad Dogs and Englishmen tour of 1970, immortalized in a live album and concert film, is revisited fifty years later by the filmmaker for the first time through the lens of the Tedeschi Mad Dogs reunion. Grammy Award-winning Trucks Band. The film features performances from the reunion show, unpublished archival material, and commentary from the original members.
Also produced by Wayne Forte and Blake Budney. Executive Produced by Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, John Beug, Thomas Tull, Alba Tull and Bert Ellis.
Campy’s comedic thriller The domain from Vertical Entertainment from directorial director James Kapner, starring Eliza Coupe, Chris Baker and Greg Finley. A narcissistic son aspiring to a life of luxury and his father’s erratic wife in search of gold decide to fight their way to the inheritance with the help of a mysterious hitman.