"Isle of Dogs." "Isle of Dogs."

Wes Anderson’s stop-mo Isle of Dogs launched this past weekend with $1.62 million from 27 locations, delivering a stellar $59,825 average per screen.

Also, in a notable record for animated features, Isle of Dogs has taken the crown for the all-time highest per-screen average for a PG-13 animated feature release in the U.S. screening in 25+ locations.

Fox Searchlight Pictures, which used a platform release for Anderson’s previous film, The Grand Budapest Hotel, to deliver the biggest hit of the director’s career, is employing the same release strategy for Isle of Dogs. The film will expand to around two dozen cities this Wednesday, growing to hundreds of locations by weekend three.

A bigger expansion is also on the horizon. Searchlight is eyeing April 13 as the nationwide launch, with potentially 1,500 theaters or more.

Speaking to Variety about this weekend’s launch, Fox Searchlight’s Frank Rodriguez said, “We are thrilled by the response at the box office this weekend in both art houses and mainstream multiplexes. The power of Wes’s legion of fans is incredible to see as they flock to the cinema to prove once again that if you provide audiences with something they want to see, they will come.”

Anderson’s first feature Fantastic Mr. Fox launched in 2009 with $265,900 from 4 locations, before expanding into 2,000 theaters immediately afterward, picking up $6.9 million in its first wide weekend. The film concluded its domestic run with $21 million.

The other big animation release of the weekend, Paramount’s Sherlock Gnomes fizzled in fourth place with an estimated $10.6 million from 3,662 theaters for a $2,896 per-screen average. It’s a steep drop from the original Gnomeo & Juliet, which scored $25.4m in its 2011 launch from 2,994 theaters.

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