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13 February 2012

MOMENTUM TAKES HAMMER'S THE WOMAN IN BLACK TO HIGHEST GROSSING BRITISH HORROR FILM IN THE LAST 20 YEARS

UK DISTRIBUTOR MOMENTUM PICTURES TAKES HAMMER’S “THE WOMAN IN BLACK” TO NUMBER ONE AT THE UK BOX OFFICE

FILM GROSSES £3.13M IN ITS OPENING WEEKEND


13 February 2012: Hammer’s chilling ghost story The Woman in Black shattered UK box office expectations during its three day opening weekend (Fri-Sun), grossing £3.13million with a per screen average of £7800 for distributor Momentum Pictures.

This weekend’s three day gross makes The Woman in Black the highest opening ever for a Hammer film in the UK and the biggest British independent opening of 2012 for Momentum Pictures.  Momentum also released The King’s Speech, the highest grossing British independent film of all time.  The Woman in Black was released in 412 cinemas across the UK and Ireland on February 10.

The film’s UK success follows last weekend’s sensational US release, which opened at an outstanding $21 million. 

The Woman in Black, starring Daniel Radcliffe, is directed by James Watkins and adapted by Jane Goldman from the classic novel by Susan Hill.   Radcliffe has been a huge draw for audiences everywhere and delighted fans on Saturday by introducing public screenings at The Empire Leicester Square and Vue Westfield.

The film is a Hammer, Alliance Films, The UK Film Council presentation, in association with Cross Creek Pictures and is a Talisman production in association with Exclusive Media. Producers are Richard Jackson, Simon Oakes and Brian Oliver. Executive Producers are Guy East, Nigel Sinclair, Tobin Armbrust, Marc Schipper, Neil Dunn, Xavier Marchand, Roy Lee and Tyler Thompson.

Daniel Radcliffe who plays Arthur Kipps in The Woman in Black said: “The whole experience of working on The Woman in Black has been truly magical, eerie and amazing.  It’s been an honour to work with Hammer and continue to contribute to British film after ‘Harry Potter’.  I found Hammer’s legacy fascinating and it was great to be able to draw upon such a rich heritage as the influence for my role as Arthur Kipps.”

Commenting on the success of The Woman in Black, Simon Oakes, President & CEO of Hammer and Vice Chairman of Exclusive Media added: “We are delighted The Woman in Black has performed so well here and in the US.  This is Hammer’s first feature ghost story and we’re delighted UK audiences have embraced it with so much enthusiasm and shows that British audiences enjoy intelligent genre which are the types of films Hammer is known for.”

“This is a fantastic result. The buzz in cinemas and online suggests great word of mouth which bodes well for the half term week ahead.  Our congratulations  to James Watkins, Jane  Goldman, Daniel Radcliffe, and all those at Hammer,” said Xavier Marchand, President of Worldwide Distribution, Alliance Films and Managing Director Momentum Pictures.

Nigel Sinclair, CEO and Co-Chairman of Exclusive Media, which is Hammer’s parent company, added: “This is a great result for Hammer in the UK and follows on from the film’s strong performance at the US box office. This project, like The Ides of March and Rush, further underlies Exclusive’s commitment to making great mainstream movies with top tier talent, and I’d like to congratulate our partners Momentum and of course Cross Creek Pictures on this success.”

Tobin Armbrust, President of Worldwide Production & Acquisitions of Exclusive Media added: “We are thrilled to share in the success of The Woman in Black with our close family, Daniel Radcliffe, Jane Goldman, James Watkins and the entire cast and crew who all worked incredibly hard on this great project. Hammer is one of our key production brands and to see it embraced in the US is a great show of support for its production philosophy.”

The Woman in Black director James Watkins said: “I'm thrilled that a British ghost story, made with a British cast, crew and investment, is playing so well with British audiences.”

Amanda Nevill, Director of the BFI said, “Following a record year in 2011, it's fantastic to see another British independent film continuing to achieve box office success, both here and in the US. Even better that a classic British story has been brought to life by Hammer, a classic British brand and with much-loved British on screen talent.”

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