Brendan Fraser's 'The Whale' Breaks 2022 Indie Box Office Record in Limited Release

Brendan Fraser also received a nomination for best actor in a drama at the upcoming Golden Globes

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 29: Brendan Fraser attends "The Whale" New York Screening at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center on November 29, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)
Brendan Fraser. Photo: Jamie McCarthy/Getty

Brendan Fraser has a box office hit on his hands.

On Sunday, Entertainment Weekly reported that Fraser's new movie The Whale reported the best limited opening of any movie in 2022 after it debuted in Los Angeles and New York City over the weekend.

The movie — which stars Fraser, 54, as a 600-lb. reclusive English teacher named Charlie who struggles to reconnect with his estranged daughter Ellie (Sadie Sink) — sold out screenings at all six movie theaters it played in over the weekend and grossed $360,000 total, according to the outlet.

The Whale averaged $60,000 in ticket sales for each screen it played on in that time period, which makes for director Darren Aronofsky's best box office opening since his 2010 film Black Swan, for which star Natalie Portman won an Academy Award for Best Actress, according to EW, which cited production company A24 and Comscore.

Fraser received additional critical acclaim for his performance in the new movie Monday as he was nominated for best actor in a drama at the upcoming 2023 Golden Globes.

Brendan Fraser in The Whale
Brendan Fraser in The Whale (2022). Courtesy of A24

The Whale's early financial success in its opening weekend limited run follows a run of highly-acclaimed screenings at various film festivals and early awards for Fraser, who in September accepted the Toronto International Film Festival's Tribute Award for his performance.

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At the movie's New York City premiere Nov. 29, Fraser told PEOPLE he would "absolutely" transform using prosthetics again for another role after The Whale.

"I think it's one of the more exacting ways you can create a character and body," Fraser said of the process. "And in this case the mandate that Charlie's costume would respect the laws of gravity and physics as opposed to the many ways that we've seen that character depicted in films before as really a one-note joke, and in a costume that's just unfair."

VENICE, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 04: Brendan Fraser attends the photocall for "The Whale" at the 79th Venice International Film Festival on September 04, 2022 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Elisabetta A. Villa/Getty Images)
Brendan Fraser. Elisabetta A. Villa/Getty

"That's a personal view," he added. "But we felt an obligation to ensure that it was cumbersome. It was accurate, that was what we strived for."

Aronofsky previously told Variety that finding an obese actor to take on the character became a "crazy chase," saying it was "impossible" to fill the role with someone "dealing with those issues."

The Whale is in theaters in Los Angeles and New York City now.

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