Pierce Brosnan in The Ghost Writer
Roman Polanski's thriller The Ghost Writer, winner of the Best Director Silver Bear at this year's Berlin Film Festival, earned an estimated $2.1 million at the North American box office this weekend.
Playing at 819 theaters – 595 more than last weekend – at the start of its fifth week, The Ghost Writer soared in terms of revenues, but disappointed somewhat in terms of per-screen average: only $2,564. Unless those screens are all located in really tiny theaters, that probably means the film's expansion will end at those 819 screens.
Polanski's latest has thus far earned $6.8 million in the U.S. and Canada. That's not bad when compared to the director's Oliver Twist ($2.08 million in 2005), but it isn't great, either, especially considering the film's remarkable first couple of weeks and the fact that it has received mostly glowing notices from US critics. For comparison's sake, The Pianist grossed $31.5 million in 2002.
Like other previous Polanski efforts, The Ghost Writer will likely do much better business overseas. To date, it's about 50-50. But Oliver Twist went on to gross more than $40 million internationally, while The Pianist took in $87.5 million.
The tale of a corrupt former British prime minister (based on Tony Blair) with lots of decomposing skeletons in his past, The Ghost Writer stars Pierce Brosnan, Ewan McGregor, Kim Cattrall, Timothy Hutton, Olivia Williams, Tom Wilkinson, James Belushi, and Eli Wallach.
Photo: The Ghost Writer (Guy Farrandis / Summit Entertainment)
Box Office source: Box Office Mojo