Lucrecia Martel's ZAMA Has a Strong Opening Weekend at the U.S. Box Office

The Argentine film Zama, the fourth feature film by acclaimed director Lucrecia Martel had a strong performance in the U.S. box office on its opening weekend. The film distributed by Strand Releasing grossed $24,100 at the IFC Center and the Film Society of Lincoln Center in New York City, for a per-theater-average of $12,050.

Fueled by very positive reviews—including being selected a New York Times Critic's Pick and being called a 'masterpiece' by Rolling Stone Magazine—as well as in-person appearances by Martel, the film also opened at the Siskel Film Center in Chicago, and will have theatrical runs statewide including Los Angeles on April 27. 

“We are thrilled with the critical response to Zama and anticipate one of our stronger theatrical releases for this year, as Lucrecia Martel tours the US with the film,” said Strand Releasing co-president Marcus Hu quoted by Deadline. “After an eight-year hiatus, her return to moviegoers is being met with great results.” 

Starring Mexican actor Daniel Giménez Cacho in the leading role and based on the acclaimed 1957 novel by Antonio di Benedetto, the film tells the story of Zama, an officer of the Spanish Crown born in South America, who waits for a letter from the King granting him a transfer from the town in which he is stagnating, to a better place.

Zama's situation is delicate. He must ensure that nothing overshadows his transfer. He is forced to accept submissively every task entrusted to him by successive Governors who come and go as he stays behind. The years go by and the letter from the King never arrives. When Zama notices everything is lost, he joins a party of soldiers that go after a dangerous bandit.