Blacks Come Out in Droves for ‘Django Unchained’

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  • Quentin Tarantino’s “Django Unchained” — starring Jamie Foxx as a slave in the pre-Civil War South — is doing strong business among African-American moviegoers, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

    It achieved the high numbers despite the fact that “Django,” from The Weinstein Co/TWC., features more than 100 uses of the N-word, igniting a debate over whether the movie is racially insensitive. But much as Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds” sanctified violence against Nazis, Django targets another bad guy nobody can sympathize with — a slave owner.

    When Foxx’s character is freed by a bounty hunter, played by Christoph Waltz, the duo goes after Leonardo DiCaprio’s character, the ruthless master of a plantation.

    Opening on Christmas Day, 42 percent of “Django’s” initial audience was black, according to exit polling data. TWC estimates that the percentage now is holding steady at about 30 percent, while a look at the top-performing theaters for “Django” further confirms that it has crossed over, playing to both white and black moviegoers.

    “Django is playing well to African-Americans and to audiences across the board. You can’t have these kind of numbers otherwise. It’s getting everybody,” TWC president of distribution Erik Lomis said.

    “Django” has grossed $77.8 million so far in North America and has a strong shot at becoming Tarantino’s most successful film at the domestic box office, eclipsing the $120 million earned by “Inglourious Basterds” in 2009.

    Of Django’s top ten-grossing theaters, three cater heavily to African-Americans: The Cinemark Egyptian 24 in Baltimore, the AMC Hoffman Center in Alexandria, Va., and the AMC Southlake 24 in Atlanta. Other theaters drew a mixed audience, including the AMC Empire 25 in New York City and the Regal Atlantic Stadium 16 in Atlanta.

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