Rebecca RubinMay 29, 2020, 8:59 AM CDT
Indie horror film “The Wretched” is inching toward a milestone, eyeing the top spot on box office charts for the fifth weekend in a row. It’s a rare feat that hasn’t been achieved since Marvel’s superhero juggernaut “Black Panther” debuted in 2018.
Notching this particular benchmark, in this case, comes with a pretty big caveat; “The Wretched” is one of the only movies on box office charts. But its relative dominance of a sparse field highlights what has become a winning strategy for IFC Films, the specialty label that behind the supernatural thriller.
At a time when Hollywood studios have delayed, amended, or scrapped plans to debut major movies, IFC Films has decided to keep release dates and continue rolling out films as scheduled. It’s allowed the company to carve out a prime position at the few moviegoing venues — most of which are drive-in theaters — that have been able to safely remain open during the coronavirus outbreak.
The unusual circumstances have fostered something of an unlikely relationship.
Usually this time of year marks the start of summer movie season, offering up the big-budget comic book adventures or sequels in popular franchises that drive-in theaters rely on to draw sizable crowds. Drive-ins have still been playing classics like “Jaws” and movies that opened before the pandemic hit, such as Disney’s animated film “Onward” and “The Invisible Man” from Universal and Blumhouse. But for fresh content, cinema owners have increasingly turned to indie titles that typically populate arthouses.
“Drive-ins traditionally play tentpoles,” notes IFC Films co-president Lisa Schwartz. “The integration has been a nice moment because it made sense on both sides.”
This article was originally published on yahoo.com/entertainment/.