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Audiences Love "I Heart Huckabees"

Starring Jude Law, Naomi Watts, and Dustin Hoffman

By

Jason Schwartzman Jude Law

Jason Schwartzman and Jude Law in "I Heart Huckabees"

© Fox Searchlight
LOS ANGELES, Oct. 5, 2004 - Earning $73,044 per theatre in its first weekend, "I HEART HUCKABEES shattered records to become the biggest feature film opening of the last two years and the fifth biggest opening of all time on a per-theatre basis (excluding animated and Imax releases). The film, which opened in four theatres in Los Angeles and New York on October 1, will open in Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Dallas, Philadelphia, Seattle, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Austin and Portland on October 8.

The first-through fourth-place holders in the race for biggest opening of all time are: "EVITA" on October 25, 1996 with $97,542 per theatre; "MOULIN ROUGE" on May 18, 2001 with $83,770 per theatre; "EDWARD SCISSORHANDS" on December 7, 1990 with $79,811 per theatre; and "PUNCH DRUNK LOVE" on October 11, 2002 with $73,411 per theatre.

Said Fox Searchlight Pictures President of Distribution Steve Gilula, "It is great to be setting historic records. But what is even more exhilarating is to be working with such an extraordinary film and its one-of-a-kind filmmaker. This is what Searchlight is all about."

Premiered at the 2004 Toronto International Film Festival as a gala presentation, "I HEART HUCKABEES" is an existential comedy featuring an ensemble cast that includes two-time Academy Award(R)-winner Dustin Hoffman (RAIN MAN, KRAMER VS. KRAMER), BAFTA Award winner Isabelle Huppert (LA DENTELLIERE, 8 FEMMES), two-time Oscar(R) nominee Jude Law (COLD MOUNTAIN, THE TALENTED MR. RIPLEY), Jason Schwartzman (RUSHMORE, SPUN), Oscar nominee Lily Tomlin (NASHVILLE, SHORT CUTS), Mark Wahlberg (THE ITALIAN JOB, THREE KINGS) and Oscar-nominated Naomi Watts (21 GRAMS, MULHOLLAND DRIVE). The New York Times' Manohla Dargis called the film "a snort-out-loud-funny master class of controlled chaos" and the Los Angeles Times' Carina Chocano raves "an exuberant and often poignant meditation on what it means to be alive."

"I HEART HUCKABEES" was directed and co-written by David O. Russell, whose first film, SPANKING THE MONKEY, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Sundance Audience Award in 1994. It also was named Best First Feature and Best First Screenplay at the Independent Spirit Awards. His second film was the acclaimed comedy FLIRTING WITH DISASTER. Russell's THREE KINGS came out in 1999 and appeared in over 100 critic's top ten lists. The film marks co-writer Jeff Baena's first feature film screenplay put into production.

Albert Markovski (Jason Schwartzman), head of the Open Spaces Coalition, has been experiencing an alarming series of coincidences the meaning of which escapes him. With the help of two Existential Detectives, Bernard and Vivian Jaffe (Dustin Hoffman and Lily Tomlin), Albert examines his life, his relationships, and his conflict with Brad Stand (Jude Law), an executive climbing the corporate ladder at Huckabees, a popular chain of retail superstores. When Brad also hires the detectives, they dig deep into his seemingly perfect life and his relationship with his spokesmodel girlfriend, the voice of Huckabees, Dawn Campbell (Naomi Watts). Under the guidance of the Jaffes' nemesis, the French radical Caterine Vauban (Isabelle Huppert), Albert pairs up with rebel firefighter Tommy Corn (Mark Wahlberg) to take matters into their own hands.

Producers on the film are David O. Russell, Gregory Goodman (8 MILE, THREE KINGS), and the Oscar-nominated Scott Rudin (THE HOURS, THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS), with Michael Kuhn (BEING JOHN MALKOVICH, WILD AT HEART) as executive producer. The director of photography is Peter Deming, ASC (MULHOLLAND DR., FROM HELL) and the production designer is K.K. Barrett (LOST IN THE TRANSLATION, BEING JOHN MALKOVICH).

PRESS RELEASE ISSUED BY FOX SEARCHLIGHT PICTURES

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