‘Sorry to Bother You’ Makes Impressive Box-Office Debut

Sorry to Bother You (Credit: Annapurna Pictures)

Not everyone who bought a movie ticket this weekend raced out to see Ant-Man and the Wasp, Incredibles 2 or The First Purge.

Some moviegoers were in the mood for more serious fare, and snapped up tickets to critically-acclaimed independent films, including Sorry to Bother You.

The surrealistic comedy, from distributor Annapurna Pictures, brought in an impressive $717,302 from just 16 theaters, according to BoxOfficeMojo. That gave the film a per-theater average of $44,831, the weekend’s best.

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The feature directorial debut from rapper-turned-filmmaker Boots Riley stars Lakeith Stanfield (Get Out), Tessa Thompson (Creed) and Armie Hammer (Call Me by Your Name).

Stanfield plays Cassius Green, a telemarketer in Oakland whose career takes off once he adopts a “white” telephone voice with customers.

Critics were impressed with the social satire, giving it a 94% positive Tomatometer rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

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Also opening, was Whitney from Roadside Attractions and Miramax. The documentary about the life and career of Whitney Houston came in 11th place at the box office, after earning $1.25 million at 452 locations. That made for a solid, though not earth-shattering per-theater-average of $2,770.

Critics heaped praise on the film, giving it a 90% Tomatometer rating.

But some devoted Houston fans may have avoided the documentary because its focus on the negative aspects of the legendary singer’s life, including drug use, marital problems and alleged childhood sexual abuse.

Another documentary, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, about late children’s television host, Fred Rogers, earned $2.59 million at 893 theaters. That brought its five-week total to $12.38 million, making it the top grossing non-fiction film of the year, according to Deadline.

Elsewhere at the box office, Ant-Man and the Wasp took first place with $76 million, earning about 30 percent more than the first Ant-Man.

Incredibles 2 came in second place with $29 million.

Last week’s leader, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, fell to third with $28.5 million. The First Purge debuted in fourth place with $17 million and Sicario: Day of the Soldado rounded out the top five with $7.3 million.

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