Debuting indie films did not fare so well, judging strictly by per-screen averages, but it's notable that Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed (Rocky Mountain Pictures), opened on more than 1,000 screens and made $2,997 per location for a total of more than $3 million for the weekend. The doc follows Ben Stein as he chases down Ferris Bueller ... oops, wrong movie! This one's about "intelligent design" in the classroom.
Opening on just one screen, Anamorph (IFC Films) grossed $3,000. Willem Dafoe stars as an NYPD detective investigating a serial killer. Critics were not kind: Anamorph scored just 28% positive at Rotten Tomatoes. David Hudson at GreenCine Daily rounds up pertinent quotes.
Two other holdovers did better as they expanded their runs. Young At Heart (Fox Searchlight), the "elderly folk chorus that sings modern rock songs" documentary, increased its theater count to 33 and averaged $4,393 per screen. Hou Hsiao-Hsien's gentle drama The Flight of the Red Balloon (IFC Films) proved its appeal beyond New York City, making $3,572 per-screen at 11 locations.