Brian Brooks is Managing Editor of MovieLine.

Indie Films Opening Week

It’s not every weekend that a specialty film can claim a record, but The Master opened with an incredible $145,949 per-theater average, the best limited release ever for a live-action film, topping another record-breaker from earlier this year, Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom, which bowed with with an average of $130,749 at four locations. The Master director Paul Thomas Anderson’s previous film, There Will Be Blood averaged $95,370 when it opened back in 2007 in two theaters.

“We’re thrilled with the numbers. It set the screen record and all the credit in the world goes to Paul Thomas Anderson with his guerrilla marketing strategy combined with moving the [release date] to this weekend,” said said TWC Head of Distribution Erik Lomis. “I’m expecting my phone to ring off the hook from exhibitors tomorrow.” The Weinstein Company had initially set an October rollout of The Master which picked up best director and actor awards at the recent Venice Film Festival where it was reportedly also the be jury’s pick for the top prize, the Golden Lion, until fest officials enforced a rule that limits the number of big awards per film. Lomis credited the cast’s performances for bringing out audiences over the weekend and Anderson for organizing pop-up screenings, driving word-of-mouth. Lomis called the strategy “an eye-opener” that clearly worked. “We could not be happier”. Weintstein plans to move The Master into 600-800 theaters in its second round.

Related: ‘The Master’ Sets Record; ‘Resident Evil 5′ Tops ‘Finding Nemo 3D’

Roadside Attractions bowed Arbitrage in 197 theaters and would have otherwise grabbed specialty weekend headlines had it not opened opposite The Master. The narrative directorial debut from Nicholas Jarecki and starring Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon and Brit Marling averaged $10,505 in 197 theaters. “Roadside Attractions and Lionsgate had a spectacular opening weekend with Arbitrage – the biggest opening ever for a film opening in both movie theaters and On Demand – by a wide margin,” said Roadside co-president Howard Cohen. “Between strong reviews and a publicity blitz by the film’s stars Richard Gere, Susan Sarandon and Nate Parker, we managed one of the strongest independent openings of the year for either a conventional or day-and-date release. The film is also #2 on iTunes movies overall, and #1 in Drama and Thriller categories.”

IFC Films opened Liberal Arts in four theaters, grossing $30K with a fair $7,500 average. The distributor said the film directed by Josh Radnor sold out weekend showings in L.A. The title will roll out into the top 15 markets next weekend.

Related: Specialty B.O. Preview: ‘The Master’, ‘Arbitrage’

Among holdovers, last week’s opening specialty hit Detropia held strong after adding four locations in its second round for an average of $8,478. The film will open in top markets including Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston and Seattle in the coming weeks as it continues to roll out across the country, with over 25 markets booked and more to come. Keep The Lights On stayed in 5 theaters, averaging $6,400. It bowed last week, averaging $10,746. Oscilloscope’s Hello I Must Be Going remained in two locations, averaging $4,740. Its first run averaged $12,500. Radius/TWC’s The Bachelorette averaged $1,600 in 60 locations in its second round. In its debut last week The Bachelorette averaged $4,064 in 47 theaters.

Wrekin Hill did not release figures for the second weekend of The Inbetweeners. Magnolia Pictures did not report numbers for any of its movies.

NEW

10 Years (Anchor Bay) NEW [3 Theaters] Weekend $23,326, Average $7,775

Arbitrage (Roadside Attractions/Lionsgate) NEW [197 Theaters] Weekend $2,069,770, Average $10,505

Bangkok Revenge (China Lion) NEW [22 Theaters] Weekend $25K, Average $1,136

Liberal Arts (IFC Films) NEW [4 Theaters] Weekend $30K, Average $7,500

The Master (The Weinstein Company) NEW [5 Theaters] Weekend $729,745, Average $145,949

Somewhere Between (Long Shot Factory) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $8,692

Stolen (Nu Image/Millennium Films) NEW [141 Theaters] Weekend $203,686, Average $1,445, Cume $203,686 (Wed. Open)

RETURNING / 2nd Weekend

Bachelorette (Radius/The Weinstein Company) Week 2 [60 Theaters] Weekend $96K, Average $1,600, Cume $348,853

Detropia (Loki Films) Week 2 [5 Theaters] Weekend $42,390, Average $ 8,478, Cume $68,515

Hello I Must Be Going (Oscilloscope Laboratories) Week 2 [2 Theaters] Weekend $9,480, Average $4,740, Cume $41,019

Keep The Lights On (Music Box Films) Week 2 [5 Theaters] Weekend $32K, Average $6,400, Cume $112,046

HOLDOVERS / 3RD+ Weekends

The Bullet Vanishes (China Lion) Week 3 [4 Theaters] Weekend $6,500, Average $1,625, Cume $109,175

For A Good Time, Call… (Focus Features) Week 3 [107 Theaters] Weekend $271,319, Average $2,535, Cume $818,224

Lawless (The Weinstein Company) Week 3 [3,063 Theaters] Weekend $4,219,000, Average $1,377, Cume $30,140,754

Little Birds (Millennium Films) Week 3 [2 Theater] Weekend $4,031, Average $ 2,016 Cume $16,594

Samsara (Oscilloscope Laboratories) Week 4 [62 Theaters] Weekend $241,205, Average $3,891, Cume $826,796

Sleepwalk With Me (IFC Films) Week 4 [119 Theater] Weekend $416,500 Average $3,500, Cume $1,333,500

Chicken With Plums (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 5 [17 Theaters] Weekend $24,096, Average $1,417, Cume $144,067

Robot & Frank (Samuel Goldwyn Films) Week 5 [209 Theaters] Weekend $428,450, Average $2,050, Cume $2,623,355

Nitro Circus Movie (Arc Entertainment) Week 6 [7 Theaters] Weekend $1,900, Average $271, Cume $3,368,000

Celeste And Jesse Forever (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 7 [152 Theaters] Weekend $155,666, Average $1,024, Cume $2,913,411

Killer Joe (LD Entertainment) Week 8 [75 Theaters] Weekend $114,923, Average $1,532, Cume $1,810,327

Searching For Sugar Man (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 8 [34 Theaters] Weekend $112,524, Average $3,310, Cume $1,054,231

2016 Obama’s America (Rocky Mountain Pictures) Week 10 [1,876 Theaters] Weekend $2.031M, Average $1,083, Cume $30,080,253

Beasts Of The Southern Wild (Fox Searchlight) Week 12 [212 Theaters] Weekend $256K, Average $1,208, Cume $10,673,433

Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection (Lionsgate) Week 12 [160 Theaters] Weekend $110K, Average $688, Cume $65,629,797

To Rome With Love (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 13 [85 Theaters] Weekend $78,250 Average $921, Cume $16,439,605

Safety Not Guaranteed (FilmDistrict) Week 15 [46 Theaters] Weekend $30K, Average $652, Cume $3,920,971

Moonrise Kingdom (Focus Features) Week 17 [157 Theaters] Weekend $195,978, Average $1,248, Cume $44,925,060

Bernie (Millennium Entertainment) Week 21 [10 Theaters] Weekend $12,472, Average $1,247, Cume $9,204,490

The Intouchables (The Weinstein Company) Week 23 [180 Theaters] Weekend $263K, Average $1,461, Cume $11,949,575

For more estimates listed by title, see box office results here...