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2016 Movie Box Office: Down Despite Theater Increase

2016 movie Obama's America poster2016 movie box office: Labor Day weekend drop despite major expansion

The “2016 movie,” Dinesh D'Souza and John Sullivan's documentary 2016 Obama's America, was down 14 percent (not 22 percent as studio estimates indicated) this past Labor Day weekend despite the addition of 656 North American venues (from 1,091 to 1,747 sites). At no. 9 on the domestic box office chart, the 2016 movie collected $5.6 million – $500,000 above reported estimates – according to weekend box office actuals found at Box Office Mojo. (Image: U.S. president Barack Obama in the 2016 movie poster.)

Right before and throughout the Republican National Convention, held last week in Tampa, Florida, the right-wing documentary based on Dinesh D'Souza's book The Roots of Obama's Rage had an impressive run in the United States. Following a successful expansion ten days ago, 2016 Obama's America soared to the no. 2 slot on the domestic box office chart on Monday, Aug. 27, and remained among the top five movies for the rest of the week.

But now that the RNC is a thing of the past – though the Clint Eastwood anti-Obama “speech” will likely be remembered for some time – 2016 Obama's America has lost steam. Following this weekend's expansion, which amounted to a 60 percent increase in number of venues, the 2016 movie was down the aforementioned 14 percent, thus suffering a 46 percent per-theater-average drop-off rate (not 51 percent as reported estimates indicated), from $5,966 to $3,211.

2016 movie: Good news and bad news

The good news: the 2016 movie's drop-off rate was lower than initially reported. The bad news: 2016 Obama's America was still down this past weekend despite having added 60 percent more theaters and even though this past Sunday preceded a major holiday – which means softer drop-off rates.

There are no two ways of looking at this sort of data. Sturdy successful movies will either increase or maintain their theater count until per-theater averages start going down dramatically. An average in the low $3,000s does not leave room for another major expansion unless Rocky Mountain Pictures and U.S. exhibitors don't mind screening 2016 Obama's America at near-empty theaters.

On the Aug. 24-26 weekend, Tony Gilroy / Jeremy Renner's The Bourne Legacy averaged a mediocre $2,555 at 3,654 theaters. On Labor Day weekend, The Bourne Legacy was screening at 523 fewer locations.

And bear in mind that the Gilroy / Renner thriller was initially screening at nearly 1,900 more venues than 2016 Obama's America. All things being equal, the lower the number of theaters, the higher the per-theater average should be. My point: barring a miraculous resurgence, the 2016 movie has already reached its box office peak and is now on its way down.

Absurd comparisons with Fahrenheit 9/11

Now, to compare 2016 Obama's America's second wide weekend drop-off rate to that of Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11, whose per-theater average was down 66 percent on its second weekend out, is, at best, an exercise in futility.

In early summer 2004, Moore's anti-George W. Bush / anti-the United States' faux “Liberal” media / anti-Iraq War / anti-Britney Spears documentary opened with an unheard of (for a documentary) $27,558 (approx. $35,600 today) per-theater average at 898 locations. The following weekend, Fahrenheit 9/11 nearly doubled its number of theaters, to 1,725 (vs. 2016 Obama's America's 60 percent increase), while competing with Sam Raimi / Tobey Maguire / Kirsten Dunst's megablockbuster Spider-Man 2.

Needless to say, with $88.15 million (approx. $114 million today), Spider-Man 2 fully dominated the North American box office over the July 4 weekend. Though its box office gross was down a hefty 32 percent, Fahrenheit 9/11 still managed an incredible (for a documentary in wide release) $9,438 per-theater average (approx. $12,200 today).

This year, 2016 Obama's America had no Spider-Man-like competition. Although Ole Bornedal's The Possession overperformed, the horror flick raked in only $17.73 million. Nor was D'Souza and Sullivan's 2016 movie coming off an “unheard of” opening-weekend box office performance. Though remarkable for a political documentary, a $5,966 per-theater average at 1,091 venues is hardly jaw-dropping. And remember: adjusted for inflation, Fahrenheit 9/11's second-weekend per-theater average was nearly four times the 2016 movie's on its second wide-release weekend. [See also “2016 Obama's America vs. Fahrenheit 9/11: NO Comparison.”]

[“Box Office Down Despite Theater Increase: 2016 Movie” continues on the next page. See link below.]

Barack Obama 2016 Obama's America (“2016 movie”) poster: Rocky Mountain Pictures.

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9 Comments to 2016 Movie Box Office: Down Despite Theater Increase

  1. Lindangel

    The movie “2016” is very powerful! I did not vote for Obama and will not again in November. I had already studied the man and knew what his ideology was. The movie just connected all the dots. God help us all if he gets re-elected!

  2. metalbuoy

    Funny, bored since my eagles barely scraped out a win against what i thought would be the hapless browns, i get on the web and expect to see doom and gloom about 2016 the movie…and i get exactly that….. where do i go for actual straight up and down (no left or right slant) commentary, fact, truth? obviously not on this website.

  3. Alex

    Hilarious how desperately this “reporter” wants to portray this film as a flash in the pan fluke. It's a hit, no matter how you slice it. Perhaps prophetic of November's results? Time shall tell.

  4. Wil Compa

    This movie is intense and riveting. It presents and supports a very different, shocking and worrisome view of our current president. If you are an Obama supporter, I challenge you to see this movie. After you see it, if you still want to vote for Obama, then at least you can do so with the full knowledge that you are a true Obamabot. Please see Nancy Pelosi's speech at the DNC and tell me if she is not treating all the delegates as though they are brain dead Obamabots.

  5. Bill

    Big difference: Moore's movie
    was fiction. u

  6. Cherchez LaFemme.

    I saw the movie. It is riveting. There are many minutes throughout of Obama speaking in his own voice, quoting from his book, Dreams from My Father. In my humble opinion, this is a MUST SEE movie-a cultual glimpse into a life shaped from a young age by political and social factors that have clearly had a permanent impact on this child who grew to be president.

  7. Leslie Bott

    I suppose the fact that movie venues and newspapers did not list the movie as being featured should not be thrown into the equation. Americans who are too dull to realize that pertinent news information is intently being withheld should be angered. Liberals want to believe what they want to believe and God forbid facts be presented to the contrary of what they want. Reminds me of the children's story about the king with no clothes. The unsupported hysteria surrounding Obama is scary. Facts people. You need to get the facts and be prepared if they are not what you want to hear.

  8. Janice Michel

    Movie sends a chill through your very soul. Should be required viewing before anyone can

  9. Gracie F

    Go Obama!!!!!!!