For weeks, “Roma,” the Netflix movie directed by Alfonso Cuarón, has occupied an odd position in Hollywood: both omnipresent and mysterious.
The combination of Mr. Cuarón’s powerful filmmaking and Netflix’s marketing muscle has pushed the drama about Mexico City life in the 1970s to the front of the Oscar race. Everywhere you turn in the movie capital, or so it seems, people are discussing the merits of “Roma” or gazing at a Netflix ad playing up the film’s 10 Oscar nominations.
Yet the unique way “Roma” was released — a three-week exclusive run in theaters before arriving online, with Netflix refusing to disclose ticket sales — has left Mr. Cuarón’s film encircled in questions. Just who is watching it? And where?
For the first time, Netflix is offering bits of information about the “Roma” audience and big-screen rollout, putting to bed the notion — asserted by rival studios — that the film received only a token release in theaters. “The theatrical release has been way beyond even my highest expectations,” Mr. Cuarón said. “I thought we might be limited to the cosmopolitan centers. We’re now in Waco, Texas. We’re in Boise, Idaho!”