Gay Cinema: Commercial Appeal

Gay indie films like “Call Me By Your Name, “Moonlight” and “Carol” were all critically acclaimed but had only enjoyed modest box-office success.

Ang Lee’s 2005 “Brokeback Mountain” might have been the exception to the rule: The film, starring Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, played in nearly 2,100 theaters during its widest release, and grossed $83 million domestically.

Last year’s best picture Oscar winner, “Moonlight,” directed by Barry Jenkins, earned 28 million domestically and was in more than 1,500 theaters at its widest release.

“Call Me By Your Name,” which won the Academy award for best adapted screenplay and scored three other nominations, including Best Picture and Best Actor (Timothee Chalamet) only screened at 914 theaters and grossed $17 million domestically.