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.
Other top ten theaters for “Django” include AMC Regal Union Square in New York City and the ArcLight in Sherman Oaks. While these locations nearly always make the list of top-grossing theaters for any given film, the Egyptian and Hoffman Center don’t as a rule pop up unless a movie crosses over, such as “The Blind Side.”
For example, none of the top ten theaters for “Django’s” fellow holiday releases “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” or “Les Miserables” are in heavily black communities.
There’s no racial breakdown for the recent Denzel Washington drama “Flight,” though the Egyptian was the only black theater making the top ten list. Conversely, Foxx’s Ray, released in 2004, played to a predominately black audience.
When testing “Django,” TWC held two simultaneous screenings in New York. One audience was made up of African-Americans, while the other was a mixed audience (about 15 percent was African-American). The film received top, identical scores from the two audiences.
Just before Christmas, Spike Lee publicly chastised Tarantino for being “disrespectful” of black people, and some who agree with Lee have called for a boycott of “Django.” Tarantino has maintained that he won’t be influenced by what he calls social criticism.
“I believe in what I’m doing wholeheartedly and passionately. It’s my job to ignore that,” he said in a December interview with THR.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (11/26-12/2)
30 photos Launch gallery
1. Little Legend and Puddy 😍😍😍😍
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2. "You on point Phife?" "all the time,Tip". 💥 #bannedfromnormal
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3. Vegan! The Impossible burger at Crossroads
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4. Lawrence #BeforeandAfterEpisodes 1-4: 184lbs 13% body fatEpisode 8: 196lbs 8% body fat S/O @coachdaveboxing with the works outs and @kildareriordan with the nutrition
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5. Jus haaaanngin out
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6. Meanwhile back at home in Atlanta GA someone mad they not on the 🛳. 😳
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7. No limits... Photo cred: Chris Bridges @ludacris
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8. new new
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9. Apparently my 260lbs is too much for the actual vines in the Hawaiian jungles to hold me without breaking and me falling hundreds of feet. So for safety purposes, I'm forced to swing thru #Jumanjj on wires strong enough to hold 12 adult buffaloes and 1 adult Rock. #OnSet #Jumanji #IronicallyIEatBuffaloDailyForLunch #MoreManThanNatureKnowsWhatToDoWith
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10. hey ma! 🎎#wcw 💙
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11. Surprise visit to our factories!!! #GoodAmerican #USA
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13. Peachy Keen 🔥✨⚡️
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14. If this don't look thankful I don't know what does. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. #UltraBlessed #24kMagic #SweetPotatoFly
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15. Late nights @nbcmarlon with the writers... we in here!!!
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16. There goes my baaaaaaaaabbbbyyyyy #QueenKingMagic!!! We're up to something! Ira BIG!!! Stay out our buisness -
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17. You want to win every game you play but when you come home to these faces... who cares. #ILoveYouGirls best part of my day, everyday!
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18. Steady,steady..... full size jenga.. "I got this one "???? Or do I ?
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19. Cornrows kind of day 😉@dontaysavoy2 you convinced me and I love. ❤️️
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20. #BrotherlyLove #tbt
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22. #basel #TeamLOVE @kingcombs
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23. Just introduced a special screening of @directher 's groundbreaking (must see) documentary @13thfilm with my brother @themichaelealy | @unitedblackout #blackoutblackfriday
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24. Me & Vanessa Williams giving #DuckLips #Pose on the set of #DaytimeDivas @vh1 - Coming Soon to a tv near you. Lol. - My make up done by @makeupsurgeon
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25. This picture just makes me wanna praise the Lord, you hear me!!!!!! Yes Lord brotha #TEDDYCAMPBELL What a #man !!! You are everything right on this picture husband ......... #gorgeous #stylish #classy #strong #masculine #king #sexy #debonair #gentlemenstyle And that #bible in your hand just seals the deal for me (probably cause i know that, that is what helped you become just as amazing as you look😘). While my heart and mind experiences the goodness of God at #church on Sundays, my eyes experiences the goodness of Teddy😍. Amen somebody🙌🏽. "Bless the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name" #myman #myhusband #goodman #blackman #dapperman #godlyman #goodfather #mybestfriend
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26. Yesterday was my mama's 53rd birthday!!!!! Got to celebrate with her all day. If this is what I have to look forward to I can't wait. Looking like a soft bucket a cocoa butter. Yaaaaaaaaaas! 😍😍😍 love you mommy!
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27. "Shout out to @PureAtlanta for getting the family right"....I'm loving this jogger. 😍😍
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28. This pic warms my heart ❤️ #myLogiebeans and aunt aunt umba @itowandabraxton 😘
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29. You will always be my baby😜. #HappyBirthdayReginae #mybaby18
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30. GC "Gods Child" Red on Red SweatSuit available now at www.MonicaApparel.com ... Take Your Crown wherever you go!! I'm pictured in a Medium... Go to the site now for other options ... cc: @trukernell
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