George Lucas’ Ward War II film about the Tuskegee Airmen, the first black aeronautical combat unit, opened over the weekend to better than expected results. The film, which has caused quite a stir in the black community, earned an impressive $19.1 million at the box office in spite of bad weather throughout the Midwest and East Coast.
Although many were concerned with the hoopla Lucas was receiving over the film, which they felt diminished the efforts of black filmmakers, others rallied to watch the film, organizing group trips for opening weekend.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Red Tails appealed to a wide cross section of audiences, but was most widely supported by black audiences.
They report: “Red Tails did well throughout the country and across all demos, although theaters in African-American markets did especially well. The top grossing theaters were in New York, Los Angeles and Atlanta. Males made up 51 percent of the audience, while 66 percent were over the age of 25. Red Tails was soft in Canada, where black-themed movies often underperform.”
While Red Tails is indeed a hit for Lucas, Fox, and director Anthony Hemingway, it remains to be seen if its success will open the door for other films with black casts.
Did you see Red Tails over the weekend? What did you think of the film?