Oscars Score One For The Little Guys

King Kong may have been an 8,000-pound gorilla at the box office, but when it came to best picture, Hollywood shot him down.

Nominations often go to box office blockbusters, but this year's honors went to movies many people haven't even seen.

In fact, as Bill Whitaker for CBS News, not a single big-budget film made the cut for best picture.

Here's who did make the cut and their ticket sales so far:

  • "Brokeback Mountain": $51 million
  • "Capote": $15.3 million
  • "Crash": $55.4 million
  • "Good Night and Good Luck": $25 million
  • "Munich": $40.6 million

    Not one of them is a big money-maker by Hollywood standards.

    "This has been a bonanza year for the very personal films, obviously," said Albert Ruddy, film producer.

    These personal films were about weighty issues, like race, gay love and the first amendment. Ruddy says topics like these were once considered box office poison.

    He produced "The Godfather" and last year's "Million Dollar Baby," a movie no studio wanted to make.

    "People said, 'Al, this is a downer. Why would anyone want to see this movie? It's about a girl boxer who loses her leg, chews her tongue and dies at the end with two old guys,' " Ruddy said.

    That tune changed when the film won the best picture Oscar last year.

    "We did over $100 million domestically and $140 million foreign," Ruddy told Whitaker.

    That sort of box office take is rare for a small movie. So, until today, this year's nominees were just glad their pictures got made.

    Their next hope is to bring in the big bucks.

    "The bottom line is the money, will always be the money," said Ruddy.
    • Polly Leider

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