While films like "Home Alone" and "Dances With Wolves" are making headlines for big box office, "Blue Planet"--the environmentally themed IMAX space film--has quietly become the hottest ticket ever at the California Museum of Science and Industry's IMAX Theater.
In its first three days, it racked up more than $16,500 in ticket sales--a house record. In its second week--over the Thanksgiving holidays--it earned $30,666. There's now talk of extending the film beyond its February play date.
Filmed from space, the 42-minute "Blue Planet" gives moviegoers' an astronauts'-eye-view of Mother Earth--something only 200 astronauts had experienced before the film's showing.
Presented by the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum and the Lockheed Corp. in cooperation with NASA, it's currently at a dozen IMAX theaters. (IMAX movies boast a frame 10 times the size of conventional 35-millimeter films and are shown on huge screens.) Locally, the film runs six times daily, with tickets priced from $3.50-$5.50.
Spokesman Evan Nossoff estimates that the museum has shown 18-20 IMAX films since its theater opened in the summer of 1984. None has taken off like "Blue Planet" which, Nossoff says, got both good reviews and coverage in the environmental press.