This just in from SIFF's press office:

Yesterday, the Seattle International Film Festival announced that its 39th fest would open with Joss Whedon's adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing; six hours later, the Opening Night Gala became single-greatest success in SIFF box office history.

"We are thrilled with the success of Much Ado and for what it means for this year's Festival and film's theatrical release," said SIFF Artistic and Co-Director Carl Spence. " This is a great triumph for us as an organization, for the Seattle film-going community, and of course, for the 'Whedonverse' at large. As Whedon has famously said, he has the 'smartest, most loyal, most passionate, most articulate group of [fans],' and I'd have to agree with him, and add that his Seattle fans are among his most devoted."

SIFF 2013: Already a lovefestTM.