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“The Help” crosses the $100M mark – AWARDS ALLEY

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Tate Taylor’s “The Help” crossed the $100 million mark at the domestic box office Tuesday night … and probably cemented its status as a Best Picture nominee at the 2011 Academy Awards in the process.

Taylor’s adaptation of Kathryn Stockett’s best-selling novel has earned $100.9M in its first 21 days. Most critics will tell you it’s riding a wave of extremely positive reviews. Virtually every person who approaches me at social events or in public, those who know what I do for a living, immediately want to talk to me about “The Help” and how much they loved it. The film even passes the “Mom test,” as my own mother – who goes to maybe one or two movies a year – saw it last weekend with a group of friends. They all adored it.

Critics are falling in line. The movie has a 74% Fresh grade on Rotten Tomatoes. That, coupled with its stellar box office, means “The Help” likely will become this year’s “The Blind Side” … a movie that’s adored by audience members, largely respected by the majority of critics, and made up of multiple award-worthy performances.

Disney has its awards campaign cut out for itself. The studio’s challenge will be keeping this film on people’s radar through the awards season, especially as heavier dramatic competition floods theaters in October, November and December. Maybe Disney can rush “The Help” to DVD and Blu-ray in time for the holidays?

For the latest awards season news, be sure to visit (and bookmark) our Awards Alley, which brings you up-to-the-minute news, interviews and reviews of every film in the awards race.

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