‘Hidden Figures’ Cast Celebrate Box Office Win For Black Women
Hidden Figures is the number one movie at the box office, narrowly defeating Rogue One: A Star Wars Story by less than $1 million. The film’s three main cast members, Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer and Janelle Monae, have taken to social media to celebrate a win for a smaller movie featuring black women in the lead roles.
Hidden Figures tells the true story of a team of African-American women who helped NASA launch the program’s first successful missions, including sending astronaut John Glenn into space. When this weekend’s initial box office estimates were tallied on Sunday, Rogue One was declared the winner. Hidden Figures, however, was underestimated and final numbers show that it earned $22.8 million to Rogue One’s $21.9 million. Making the victory even more impressive is that Hidden Figures is playing in nearly 2,000 less theaters than the Star Wars spin-off.
Following the box office win, Henson expressed on Instagram, “I have been told my entire career ‘Black women can’t open films domestically or internationally.’ Well anything is possible. Most importantly this proves that PEOPLE LIKE GOOD MATERIAL. HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH GENDER OR RACE. Agreed?!” The actress added, “Thank you to everyone who supported this weekend even during the snow storm (which btw affected some of our biggest demographics). AND WE WERE IN FEWER THEATERS!!! What a proud moment!!! #HiddenFigures P.S. telling me what I can’t do only makes me focus on proving nay Sayers WRONG!!!”
Spencer similarly wrote, “Thanks to everyone who saw the value in seeing this story told and finally giving these heroines their due!!! The force was with us!!!! Thanks for supporting us and them!!!” Meanwhile, Monae said, “THE FORCE WAS WITH US. It took over 50 years to tell the story of these 3 brilliant African American female protagonists.”
Monae further noted, “This weekend we only had 2,471 theaters, while ‘Rogue One’ had 4,157 locations. We had snow storms that caused east coast region theaters to close, but [Hidden Figures] still managed to win the race!” The actress continued, “THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO BOUGHT A TICKET, BROUGHT YOUR FAMILY/FRIENDS, TOLD A FRIEND, POSTED ON SM, prayed for this film, etc. WE ARE Forever forever THANKFUL.”