(New York, NY) October 14, 2012 – Oscilloscope Laboratories’ release of Ron Fricke’s and Mark Magidson’s hit documentary SAMSARA (currently in theaters) has become the studio’s highest-grossing film since its inception in February 2008. This weekend, SAMSARA surpassed the company’s prior benchmark, 2011’s WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN, which totaled $1.74 MM at the domestic box office.
SAMSARA marks the third collaboration between Ron Fricke and Mark Magidson, whose award-winning films BARAKA and CHRONOS brought a new visual and musical artistry to theaters. Filmed over a period of five years in twenty-five countries on five continents, and shot on 70mm film, SAMSARA subverts our expectations of a traditional documentary. It explores the wonders of our world, from the mundane to the miraculous, combining breathtaking images with transcendent music to create a unique and powerful experience that infuses the ancient with the modern.
SAMSARA opened in New York and Seattle on August 24th to the highest per-screen-average of any documentary released in 2012 and fifth highest of any film for the year at that time – an impressive $38,111 per screen. The critically-praised film expanded to Los Angeles the following week and then nationwide, where it continues to perform, with many theaters yet to open. The film has grossed over 1.8MM as of October 14, 2012 (the filmmaker’s previous effort, Baraka, took in $1.33MM by the end of its run).
Earlier this year, Oscilloscope’s release of SHUT UP AND PLAY THE HITS, a documentary about the band LCD SOUNDSYSTEM’s final concert at Madison Square Garden, grossed over $500k in primarily one-night-only showings around the country. SHUT UP AND PLAY THE HITS was the first Oscilloscope release since executives Dan Berger and David Laub took over at the helm of the company in May, following the passing of company founder Adam Yauch and the departure of David Fenkel.
Dan Berger and David Laub said, “We couldn’t be more thrilled about the success of SAMSARA. It’s a great film that perfectly represents the kind of unique, audacious, and personal cinema for which Oscilloscope will always stand. SAMSARA’S box office is a testament not only to the brilliant film Ron and Mark have made, but also to the hard work of everyone at O-Scope. We will be celebrating with pizza and a clown.”
On working with O-scope, Mark Magidson said, “It has been a privilege to witness first hand the work ethic and dedication the entire Oscilloscope team has demonstrated. Dan and David have guided the company through challenging circumstances with enthusiasm, hard work, and professionalism.”