The massive opening of social comedy Shouf Shouf Habibi! in the Netherlands even surprised distributor Independent Films "This is beyond our expectations," Niels Swinkels, head of marketing told ScreenDaily.com. "We were aiming for 100,000 admissions, but in the first weekend we already reached 50,000, much better than we were hoping for."
The success of Shouf Shouf Habibi! was partly based on the large amount of free publicity. The film - a black satire on the relationship between Moroccan and Dutch members of society - obviously touched a nerve in the Dutch press.
On its opening day Shouf Shouf Habibi! broke the screen-average record for a Dutch movie with 8,500 admissions per screen. The film launched on 30 screens, but Independent plans to extend that number in upcoming weeks.