Moonlight Shines on U.S. Box Office After Oscars Best Picture Win
Moonlight has been given a box office boost following its Best Picture win at the Oscars, scoring its biggest weekend in America. The film returned to cinemas following the confusion of the Academy Awards, where it was revealed as the night’s big winner a minute after La La Land had incorrectly been named the Best Picture by co-presenter Faye Dunaway.
Moonlight took in an additional $2.3 million over the weekend, lifting director Barry Jenkins’ $1.5 million film past the $25 million mark in the U.S. That makes it the second-lowest grossing Oscar Best Picture winner in modern history — behind 2009’s The Hurt Locker, which earned just $17 million at the U.S. box office. Moonlight is on course to become the biggest-grossing film to date for arthouse movie company A24. That title currently belongs to Ex Machina, which hauled in $25.4 million at the North American box office in 2015. The coming-of-age film landed a trio of firsts at the Academy Awards — Mahershala Ali became the first Muslim actor to win an Oscar for his portrayal of drug dealer Juan in the movie, and the film is the first Best Picture winner to feature an all-black cast. It’s also the first movie to deal with lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) issues to score the big prize.