Indie FilmsFox Searchlight opened its Oscar hopeful 12 Years A Slave in limited release following spectacular runs in Telluride, Toronto and the New York Film Festival. The film, directed by Steve McQueen and starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, grossed $960K in 19 theaters for a strong $50,525 PSA, placing it in the upper echelon for the year. Searchlight said Sunday that the film, produced by New Regency, reached an “incredibly diverse audience,” adding, “We have been attracting both the Art/Specialty cinephile crowd as well the African-American audience. CinemaScores have come in with an overall grade of ‘A’ with a fairly wide spread in terms of age and demographics.”

To put in perspective, SPC’s Blue Jasmine opened in 6 theaters in August, averaging just over $102K ($31.97 cume); Focus’ The Place Beyond The Pines bowed in April with 4 runs, averaging $69,864 ($21.4M cume); A24′s Spring Breakers opened in a trio of runs, averaging $87,667 ($14.12M cume), while the distributor’s August release The Spectacular Now opened with a $49,354 average in 4 theaters ($6.8M cume). Searchlight’s own box office successes The Way, Way Back opened in 19 locations in July, averaging just over $29K ($21.43M cume) and Enough Said opened in 4 theaters, averaging $58,200 September 18 ($10.787M cume so far).

Less stratospheric was the Robert Redford starrer All Is Lost which opened with 6 runs, grossing over $97K for a $16,225 average. Roadside/Lionsgate said that the film jumped 61% from Friday to Saturday, noting rightfully that the film played in “an extremely competitive environment.” Said the companies via a statement Sunday: “The film has a 95% on Rotten Tomatoes and an 89 on Metacritic. Reviews have been just spectacular, along with awards buzz for Redford and the film — and we’re confident that audiences will continue to discover it as we roll out gradually.” All Is Lost will add 15 more markets October 25.

Sony Classics opened Daniel Radcliffe’s Sundance debut Kill Your Darlings from first-time feature filmmaker John Krokidas in 4 theaters in New York and Los Angeles, grossing $57,722. The film averaged $14,431. The film will expand to Orange County and San Diego next weekend before heading out to 16 theaters in the Bay Area, Chicago, Cambridge, MA and Washington, D.C. the following weekend. It will head to most major markets through November.

Self distributed doc American Promise began its run in two theaters this weekend. It grossed $18,250 for a $9,125 average. A spokesperson said that the film was screening with “limited capacity” over the weekend and “countless patrons were turned away Friday evening with shows sold out hours in advance at both locations.” Added the filmmakers: “The film’s extensive and aggressive community outreach campaign yielded multiple sold out shows in the 90-seat theater at the Bunin and led to to it being moved into a larger theater uptown due to demand.” American Promise will next open in Los Angeles on October 25 before heading to Washington and Philadelphia on November 1, Atlanta on November 8, the SF Bay area on November 15, Chicago on November 22 and in additional markets across the country throughout November and December.

Also opening in 1 theater was Kino Lorber’s Camille Claudel 1915. The film grossed $5,500 and has cumed $7,124 since its Wednesday bow.

Meanwhile no holdovers showed second weekend pizzazz. As I Lay Dying added one location, grossing $4,159 ($2,079 average) after bowing with $6K in one theater last week. Escape From Tomorrow played 11 theaters, grossing just under $18K. The film had opened with a $66K gross in 30 runs. And Relativity kept Romeo & Juliet in 461 theaters, grossing $231K for a slight $501 average. It opened with $509K last week, averaging $1,104.

In its 5th weekend, Enough Said continues to be a box office cash cow for Searchlight. The film added over 150 runs from the week prior, grossing $1.8 million, averaging $2,378. Searchlight noted that the romantic comedy written and directed by Nicole Holofcener “reached beyond the Art/Specialty audience to attract mainstream filmgoers” this weekend.

NEW

All Is Lost (Roadside/Lionsgate) NEW [6 Theaters] Weekend $97,350, Average $16,225
American Promise (Rada Film Group) NEW [2 Theaters] Weekend $18,250, Average $9,125
12 Years A Slave (Fox Searchlight) NEW [19 Theaters] Weekend $960K, Average $50,526
Camille Claudel 1915 (Kino Lorber Films) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $5,500, Cume $7,124 (Wed. Opening)
Kill Your Darlings (Sony Pictures Classics) NEW [4 Theaters] Weekend $57,722, Average$14,431, Cume $73,545

Returning / 2nd Weekend

As I Lay Dying (Millennium) Week 2 [2 Theaters] Weekend $4,159, Average $2,079, Cume $13,327
Broadway Idiot (FilmBuff) Week 2 [6 Theaters] Weekend $11,566, Average $1,927, Cume $18,312
Cassadaga (Archstone Distribution) Week 2 [ Theaters] Weekend $, Average $
Escape From Tomorrow (Producers Distribution Agency) Week 2 [11 Theaters] Weekend $17,966, Average $1,633, Cume $117,977
The Inevitable Defeat Of Mister And Pete (Codeblack/Lionsgate) Week 2 [147 Theaters] Weekend $87K, Average $592, Cume $443,805
Ghost Team One (The Film Arcade) Week 2 [ Theaters] Weekend $, Average $
God Loves Uganda (Variance Films) Week 2 [ Theater] Weekend $
Romeo & Juliet (Relativity) Week 2 [461 Theaters] Weekend $231K, Average $501, Cume $948,073

Holdovers / 3RD+ Weekends

A.C.O.D. (The Film Arcade) Week 3 [42 Theaters] Weekend $50,655, Average $1,206, Cume $126,003
Grace Unplugged (Roadside Attractions/Lionsgate) Week 3 [313 Theaters] Weekend $245,420, Average $784, Cume $2,188,758
Parkland (Exclusive Media) Week 3 [32 Theaters] Weekend $32,681, Average $1,021, Cume $616,705
A Touch Of Sin (Kino Lorber) Week 3 [6 Theaters] Weekend $10K, Average $1,666, Cume $70,611
Metallica Through The Never (Picturehouse) Week 4 [45 Theaters] Weekend $70,820, Average $1,574, Cume $3,348,187
After Tiller (Oscilloscope) Week 5 [6 Theaters] Weekend $9,500, Average $1,583, Cume $38,594
Enough Said (Fox Searchlight) Week 5 [757 Theaters] Weekend $1.8M, Average $2,378, Cume $10,787,447
Generation Iron (Vladar) Week 5 [33 Theaters] Weekend $55,230, Average $1,674, Cume $696,715
Mother Of George (Oscilloscope) Week 6 [7 Theaters] Weekend $14K, Average $2K, Cume $124,084
Wadjda (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 6 [66 Theaters] Weekend $149,676, Average $2,268, Cume $809,401
Austenland (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 10 [47 Theaters] Weekend $45,164, Average $961, Cume $1,965,983
The Spectacular Now (A24) Week 12 [54 Theaters] Weekend $20,312, Average $376, Cume $6,809,316
Blue Jasmine (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 12 [152 Theaters] Weekend $186,727, Average $1,228, Cume $31,970,054

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