12 years a slave, movie director Steve McQueen’s latest work is showing in very limited release in Canadian and American cinemas but its gathering momentum for a larger role out next week.

The movie studio and producers behind the film have deliberately slowly widening the theatre count over the past two weeks, picking up critical and financial success along the way. The film took in $2.15 million this weekend, which is good enough for the 8th position.

12 years a slave was showing in only 17 theatres last week, it’s now in 123. The film had the highest per screen average gross on this week’s boxoffice chart, at $17,480 US. It will be pushed into more cinemas next week.