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January 25, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

The major studios are hoping to capitalize on Oscar nominations this weekend by expanding nominated films that have not yet been released on DVD. “The Oscar spotlight could boost several contenders at the box office,” Daily Variety observed, then commented, “It better: The class of 2011 consists of some comparative underachievers.” Only one film in the list of nine best-picture nominees has earned more than $100 million — The Help, and that film, most film commentators agree, stands virtually no chance of winning the coveted top award. The film that has the most to gain from the nominations — it has ten of them — is The Artist, which thus far has earned only $12 million. It will be expanding to 600 theaters next weekend. Martin Scorsese’s Hugo, which was down to just 650 theaters last weekend, climbs to 944 next weekend. Also getting a new lease on life after viertually disappearing from most cineplexes are Sony’s Moneyball and Fox Searchlight’s The Tree of Life.