Michael Moore's controversial new documentary 'Sicko' opens strongly

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Monday, July 2, 2007

SiCKO theatrical poster

Michael Moore's controversial new documentary SiCKO opened to strong box office numbers in limited release over the weekend. The biting and sometimes humorous expose of America's health system earned weekend totals of US$4.5 Million on 441 screens, the second highest opening weekend numbers for a documentary ever, after Moore's own Fahrenheit 9/11.

This follows last weekend's 'sneak preview' screenings of the film in 43 major markets. Fox News reports that all of these screenings were sold out. The latest documentary from Academy Award and Cannes Film Festival winning filmmaker Moore earned US$10,200 per screen, second in the weekend averages, and ninth in total sales. Ratatouille was the weekend's number one film with US$11,935 per screen (3940 screens) and top earnings of $47 Million. After only one weekend's limited release, SiCKO is now the fifth most successful political documentary ever, behind Fahrenheit 9/11, Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, Bowling for Columbine, and Roger and Me. Four of the top five are now by documentarian Moore.

SiCKO first opened at the AMC Lincoln Square in New York City. Fox News reported that the first screening's take was "possibly a record for an exclusive showing." Moore attended one of the Lincoln Square screenings; his presence not known until he revealed himself during the standing ovation that the film garnered. The ensuing melee of enthusiastic fans resulted in a NYC fire marshal being called in to clear the theater, with Moore then participating in an informal question and answer session on the street.

Moore has appeared on numerous talk shows in support of the film, which The Weinstein Company will roll out to 200 more theaters this week.

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