A joint press release from 20th Century Fox, the movie’s distributor, and Lucasfilm explained the reason for the relatively unassuming screen rollout being George Lucas‘ desire to ensure the film would be shown only on high-quality screens to give the fans the best possible experience.
Initially, Lucasfilm had hoped there would be enough digital screens nationwide to have a primarily digital exhibition but, as of now, it will premiere on a mere 94 digital screens worldwide, 59 of them in the United States. Still, that’s the widest digital debut to date for a major motion picture.
This weekend’s box office is shaping up to be a showdown between Clones and Spider-Man. Although Lucas’ epic will probably prevail, it likely won’t reach Spider-Man‘s weekend box office gross record, given the modest number of screens Clones will show on.