Martin Scorsese’s “Killers of the Flower Moon” opened this weekend in over 3,600 theaters, taking in an estimated $23 million in the United States and Canada. It’s the largest box office opening for the director since the $41.4 million opening for “Shutter Island” in February 2010 (starring Leonardo DiCaprio) and a special feat considering both its length — three and a half hours — and the lack of promotional support from its cast, which includes Mr. DiCaprio and Robert De Niro, because of the actors’ strike.
It earned an additional $21 million in its international release.
“Killers” is the largest theatrical release for Apple Studios, which will return to the box office at Thanksgiving with the Ridley Scott epic “Napoleon” and again in February with the spy caper “Argylle.”
(Its strong showing didn’t earn bragging rights for this weekend’s box office. The No. 1 spot for the second week in a row went to “Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour,” which cost $15 million. It earned an estimated $31 million for a total of $129.8 million — a boon for AMC Theatres Distribution’s first release.)
According to the worldwide distributor Paramount Pictures, the film about the murders of members of the Osage Nation, a Native American tribe in Oklahoma, in the 1920s, performed well in the top movie markets of Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco but also drew audiences in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. Mr. Scorsese filmed the movie in Oklahoma and cast a number of Osage in the film.
More men saw the film than women, and 44 percent of the audience was under 30, a surprise for Paramount.
“That was really telling and bodes well for the future of cinema,” Paramount’s president of domestic distribution, Chris Aronson, said in an interview. “I didn’t know that many younger people would seek this movie out because, on the surface, you wouldn’t think that there would be that much appeal there.”
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