Red Dog posts biggest opening weekend for a local film this year

WA-film Red Dog has posted the highest opening weekend box office result for a local film this year.

The folktale about a hitchhiking kelpie that unites an isolated mining town grossed an impressive $1.78 million in its opening weekend, across 245 screens – giving it a strong screen average of $7267. This took it to fourth place at the local box office. With preview screenings, the feel-good story about man's best friend has made $1,808,787. 

As a result, the Roadshow flick has beaten Sanctum’s opening weekend in February, when it grossed $1.6 million – from its 252 screens.

Directed by Kriv Stenders (Boxing Day), the film stars Koko the kelpie (who took about two years of preparation for the role), Josh Lucas (Life As We Know It), Rachael Taylor (Summer Coda), Luke Ford (Animal Kingdom) and Keisha Castle-Hughes (Whale Rider).

Red Dog was filmed in the Pilbara region of Western Australia and in parts of South Australia. It was produced with the assistance of ScreenWest and LotteryWest. To view the trailer, click here.

In its second week at the local box office, rom-com Big Mamma’s Boy grossed $58,824 from 33 screens ($1783 screen average), while horror film Needle took in a further $2427, across just five Perth screens – which was down 77 per cent on last week.

Madman’s Snowtown continued its run at the local box office, taking in a further $5516 from just eight screens in its 12th week, bringing its total to $1.11 million. Australian-UK co-production Oranges and Sunshine made $41,647 from 57 screens in its ninth week Down Under.

In other box office news, Rise of the Planet of the Apes of course dominated in its opening weekend for Fox, raking in $4.7 million across 359 screens. The $US93 million reboot stars James Franco and its trailer can be seen here.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 still remains in second spot for Warner Bros, raking in $2.26 million from 553 screens in its fourth week. It's now made $47.84 million at the local box office. The final film in the franchise, shown in 3D, posted the biggest opening day and week locally.

Captain America: The First Avenger took out third spot at the box office, taking in $2.16 million for Paramount, while Bad Teacher rounded out the top five, grossing $991,592 for Sony Pictures.

Australian films at the local box office in 2011:

 Opening w/e
 Box Office
Oranges and Sunshine
Red Dog
Madman Entertainment
Mrs. Carey's Concert
Music Films
Mad Bastards
Sleeping Beauty
Griff The Invisible
Big Mamma's Boy
Madman Entertainment
Wasted On The Young
The Reef
Pinnacle Films
A Heartbeat Away
Pack Screen
Cane Toads: The Conquest
Pinnacle Films
Here I Am

Source: IF, MPDAA