Jack Kerouac 'On the Road' movie version has disappointing U.S. box office debut
Directed by Walter Salles, and starring Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley, and Kristen Stewart, On the Road had a surprisingly soft bow at the North American box office this weekend, Dec. 21-23. The IFC Films-distributed drama based on Jack Kerouac's classic novel grossed $43,200 at four locations, averaging a modest $10,800 per site according to weekend estimates found at Deadline.com. (Image: Kristen Stewart as Marylou, On the Road.)
It remains to be seen whether or not On the Road will manage to gain some much-needed stamina throughout the Christmas / New Year's holiday season. At the North American box office, the weekend before Christmas tends to be quite low key; but even taking that into account, On the Road's debut was quite disappointing when one considers the presence of TRON: Legacy's Garrett Hedlund and Snow White and the Huntsman / Breaking Dawn - Part 2's Kristen Stewart – not to mention Viggo Mortensen, Amy Adams, and Kirsten Dunst in supporting roles. Plus the behind-the-scenes prestige of director Walter Salles, The Motorcycle Diaries screenwriter José Rivera, and executive producer Francis Ford Coppola.
On the Road vs. Amour, The Impossible
For comparison's sake: At three locations, Michael Haneke's widely acclaimed Palme d'Or winner Amour took in $70,700, averaging $23,567 per site according to studio estimates found at Box Office Mojo. And the French-language Amour is hardly an audience-friendly flick: veterans Jean-Louis Trintignant and Emmanuelle Riva, neither of whom means anything to the vast majority of (ignorant) U.S. moviegoers, play an elderly couple facing illness and death.
Also, Juan Antonio Bayona's tsunami drama The Impossible, starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor, debuted with an estimated $139,000 at 15 venues, averaging $9,267 per site. That's a lower per-theater average than On the Road's – but at nearly four times more theaters. All things being equal, the fewer the number of theaters, the higher the per-theater average should be. In other words: relatively speaking, The Impossible opened much more strongly than On the Road.
And of course, there's no comparison to Kathryn Bigelow's generally acclaimed and highly controversial Zero Dark Thirty, which has been getting lots of awards-season / Academy Award buzz, in addition to tons of free publicity from outraged CIA honchos and U.S. congressmen and women. Featuring Jessica Chastain, Jason Clarke, Joel Edgerton, and Jennifer Ehle, Zero Dark Thirty scored an estimated $410,000 at five locations, or $82,000 per site – despite having blown off some steam following its Wednesday debut.
Even IFC Films' own The Central Park Five – Ken Burns, Sarah Burns, and David McMahon's documentary about a gross miscarriage of justice committed in New York City in the early '90s – collected $30,570 on its opening weekend at three locations in late November, averaging $10,190 per site. That's about the same level as the star-studded On the Road.
Now, had either Garrett Hedlund or Kristen Stewart – or both – earned early awards-season mentions from U.S.-based critics' groups, the Screen Actors Guild, or the Golden Globes, things would likely have been quite different for On the Road at the domestic box office. However, that didn't happen. In fact, On the Road has been all but ignored so far.
On the Road vs. Walter Salles' The Motorcycle Diaries, Central Station; David Cronenberg / Robert Pattinson's Cosmopolis
Distributed by Focus Features, Walter Salles' Spanish-language The Motorcycle Diaries, featuring Gael García Bernal, Rodrigo de la Serna, and Breaking Dawn - Part 2's Mia Maestro, debuted with $159,819 at three North American locations in late September 2004, averaging a remarkable $53,273 per site (approx. $68,100 adjusted for inflation). The Motorcycle Diaries went on to gross $16.78 million in the U.S. and Canada, in addition to $40.88 million internationally. (Image: Garrett Hedlund as Sal Paradise, On the Road.)
And back in 1998, the Portuguese-language Central Station, starring eventual Best Actress Academy Award nominee Fernanda Montenegro, averaged $17,854 (approx. $30,200 adjusted) at two locations. Distributed by Sony Pictures Classics, Central Station cumed at $5.59 million in North America.
Another comparison: like On the Road, an “automobile-set,” stream-of-consciousness 2012 Cannes Film Festival entry that received mixed reviews in the U.S., David Cronenberg's Cosmopolis debuted in the United States (via Entertainment One) last August. Starring Kristen Stewart's fellow Twilight actor Robert Pattinson, on its first weekend out Cosmopolis raked in $70,339 at three locations, averaging a respectable $23,446 per venue. The film's initial bow was likely helped by the Rupert Sanders / Kristen Stewart / Robert Pattinson to-do that in late summer kept the U.S. media in a state of frenzy for weeks.
However, after its solid start, Cosmopolis' per-theater average plummeted to a meager $2,453 following a minor expansion on weekend no. 2. The Cronenberg / Pattinson collaboration ultimately cumed with a highly disappointing $763,556 in North America (including Canada, where the movie was released in the spring).
According to figures – probably incomplete – found at Box Office Mojo, On the Road has collected $8.37 million internationally. Its top markets are France with $2.7 million, Brazil with $1.53 million, Italy with $1.13 million, and the UK with $934,000. Brazil's relatively good showing can partly be explained by the fact that Walter Salles is a renowned filmmaker in his home country, while Kristen Stewart has a huge following there as well. On the Road's budget was a reported $25m; IFC Films acquired it for an amount “in the low seven figures.” (Update: On the Road opened in France at the time of the Cannes Film Festival.)
IFC Films at the domestic box office
Something else worth noting is that IFC-distributed movies haven't been faring very well at all at the North American box office. The most successful IFC release in 2012 is Mike Birbiglia and Seth Barrish's Sleepwalk with Me, which collected a grand total of $2.26 million, after opening with (an impressive) $68,801 at one New York City location in late August. In fact, IFC movies are generally prestigious entries that may find long lives in the home-video market, but at the box office their overall performance has ranged from the very modest to the downright disastrous.
And finally, surely not helping matters for On the Road were wildly mixed reviews. For instance, Walter Salles' film has a mediocre 44 percent approval rating and 5.9/10 average among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics.
On the Road will reportedly reach more theaters on January 18, eight days after the 2013 Academy Award nominations are announced. (The Oscar nods were to have been announced on January 15; the Academy later moved the date forward to Jan. 10.) However, despite Kristen Stewart's visibility at various functions, at this stage it doesn't seem very likely that the film will be found in many – or even any – Oscar categories. (See also: “On the Road to become another The Motorcycle Diaries?”)
Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley, Kristen Stewart topline On the Road cast
Besides the aforementioned Garrett Hedlund as Dean Moriarty, Sam Riley as Jack Kerouac's alter ego Sal Paradise, and Kristen Stewart as Marylou, On the Road features Viggo Mortensen, Amy Adams, Kirsten Dunst, Elisabeth Moss, Tom Sturridge, Alice Braga, Danny Morgan, Steve Buscemi, and Terrence Howard.
Garrett Hedlund as Sal Paradise, On the Road photo: IFC Films.
Photo: Kristen Stewart as Marylou, On the Road photo: IFC Films.
'On the Road' weekend box office figures below estimates
On the Road, toplining Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley, and Kristen Stewart, and directed by Walter Salles, opened to disappointing figures this past weekend in North America: an estimated $39,550 at four locations, according to (updated) figures found at Box Office Mojo. On the Road's per-theater average was a quite modest $9,888 per site. (Image: Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley On the Road.)
On the Road's opening-weekend box office take is particularly disappointing when one considers that the film was directed by the well-regarded Walter Salles, among whose credits are two key road movies of the last 15 years – Central Station (1998) and The Motorcycle Diaries (2004). And that it features TRON: Legacy actor Garrett Hedlund; in addition to Viggo Mortensen, Amy Adams, and Kirsten Dunst in supporting roles; and Twilight actress Kristen Stewart doing things that Bella Swan could only dream of doing with Edward and Jacob.
I haven't been able to find On the Road's box office estimates for the last three days. Though not guaranteed, chances are the film's figures improved on Christmas Day, as that has been a regular pattern. We'll only find out for sure once IFC Films makes those figures available.
On the Road box office post: Lots of angry comments
Update: This On the Road box office post became one of Alt Film Guide's most commented posts in months. Why? For two reasons:
a) Those with a strong sense of moralistic outrage but little-to-no sense of basic ethical principles sent a barrage of comments filled with ad hominem attacks against either Kristen Stewart or myself – or both. (These have been duly deleted and the commenters in question have been banned.)
b) I dared to compare the U.S. opening-weekend box office performances of On the Road and Cosmopolis. (Needless to say, my comparisons to Amour, The Impossible, Central Station, and The Motorcycle Diaries went unnoticed.) As a result, I became enmeshed in lengthy discussions with assorted Robert Pattinson fans who expressed outrage at the Cosmopolis / On the Road comparison and at my raising the issue that on its opening weekend Cosmopolis was helped by the Robert Pattinson-Kristen Stewart-Rupert Sanders-Liberty Ross Quadrangle Scandal.
The Attack of the Moralistic Brigade and bias accusations
Regarding “item a),” there isn't much I can say except that holier-than-thou moralists are some of the most venomous, most repulsive, and, really, most dangerous people on the planet. That's no exaggeration. Take a good look at history – up to the present day – and you'll see that I'm right.
Now, do Alt Film Guide and myself have a “pro-Kristen Stewart bias”? Well, as much as I have a pro-Norma Talmadge bias. Or a pro-Tyrone Power bias. Or a pro-Susan Sarandon, pro-Pierre Fresnay, pro-Anna Magnani bias. Or an anti-Clint Eastwood bias, for that matter. I love watching Anna Magnani; I don't love watching Clint Eastwood. If that's having a “bias,” then I'm biased. If that's merely having one's likes and dislikes, and expressing one's opinions about issues, then, horrors, I'm a human being with a functioning brain.
Check out my (very negative) review of Eastwood's Oscar-winning Million Dollar Baby. One trade-magazine critic sent me a note (I should have kept it…) calling my commentary “the most idiotic film review I've ever read in my 200 years as a film critic.” (Okay, I'm paraphrasing a bit here.)
Now, was I being biased? Had I expressed my dislike for Million Dollar Baby merely because I saw Clint Eastwood's name attached to it, that would unquestioningly have been a form of bias. But I disliked Million Dollar Baby for a variety of reasons, as explained in my review. And if you, like that trade-magazine critic, don't agree with me, that doesn't necessarily make you biased either. It could just mean we have different likes and dislikes. Nothing wrong with that.
As for accusations that Alt Film Guide gets “paid by Kristen Stewart and her people” because we dare not judge or attack her private life … Hell, I'd be thrilled if Kristen Stewart (or any of “her people”) has even heard of us – though I doubt very much that either she or they has/have.
The positive articles I've recently written about Kristen Stewart have been the result of two things: a) I enjoy watching her – in fact, she's one of the few current performers that I truly enjoy; b) I utterly despise moralists and judgmental morons with no lives.
Robert Pattinson fan comes out
Now, when it comes to “item b),” there's much I can and probably should say / clarify. I'll try to make this as brief as possible, so my “clarification” won't be nearly as long as the comments section in this On the Road post. (Image: Robert Pattinson Cosmopolis.)
First of all, I must grudgingly come out as a Robert Pattinson fan. Why grudgingly? Because my admission may come across as if I'm trying to either appease or make peace with the rabid segment among Pattinson's fans, to beg their forgiveness, compassion, and understanding. That's not the case at all. I want those demented, monstrous jerks away from this site (and from our Twitter account).
Now, before I proceed I want to make clear that I'm fully aware that every star has their share of rabid fans. We've been mercilessly badmouthed by some Kristen Stewart fans in the past – we still are. In fact, we've been called names by fans of just about everybody, from Steven Spielberg and Mel Gibson to John Cassavetes and Louise Brooks. We also get attacked by rabid haters whenever we say something positive about a performer or director or screenwriter they abhor. It's how it goes; the Internet offers a great – if more than a tad disturbing – glimpse into humankind's (safely anonymous) sociopathic tendencies.
On Christmas Eve, for instance, one individual sent us a lengthy comment bashing Tom Cruise and Jack Reacher. I looked into it and discovered that that same comment had been posted in dozens of other sites. In other words, someone spent the days before Christmas posting an online comment berating and ridiculing Tom Cruise. Why? Why indeed.
Back to Robert Pattinson: I find him a highly capable actor – I thought he was excellent in the widely panned Bel Ami and I even enjoy his moody, gloomy Edward. In interviews, Pattinson comes across as funny, witty, warm, unpretentious, unaffected. A rarity among movie stars (and human beings in general).
That's the reason I enjoy writing about both Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart. I actually like them – and that's not at all how I feel about the vast majority of early 21st century Hollywood movie stars, including lots of highly-regarded names, whom I find either uninteresting or downright unwatchable.
Cosmopolis and On the Road: Why the comparison?
Now, back to Cosmopolis and On the Road. Why the comparison? For those who've had trouble understanding what, in my view, should have been obvious, here's why:
a) Both Cosmopolis and On the Road debuted at the Cannes Film Festival.
b) Both Cosmopolis and On the Road were distributed in the United States by a relatively small indie company (Cosmopolis' eOne Films – whose parent company, eOne, is big in Canada and the UK [they distribute the Twilight movies] but not in the U.S.; On the Road's IFC Films).
c) Both Cosmopolis and On the Road are uncommercial, highly personal English-language projects, featuring a loose, episodic, stream-of-consciousness narrative – one in which automobiles serve as a major setting.
d) Both Cosmopolis and On the Road were directed by well-respected filmmakers (David Cronenberg / Walter Salles), and feature a “name” supporting cast (Juliette Binoche, Jay Baruchel, Mathieu Amalric and others in Cosmopolis / Amy Adams, Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst, and others in On the Road).
e) Both Cosmopolis and On the Road had similar budgets (Cosmopolis $20m; On the Road $25m).
f) Both Cosmopolis and On the Road received mixed reviews in North America. Among Rotten Tomatoes' top critics, Cosmopolis has a 50 percent score and 5.7/10 average (28 reviews); On the Road has a 42 percent score and 5.9/10 average (19 reviews).
g) Both Cosmopolis and On the Road feature two major Hollywood celebrities in key roles, both of whom also starred in the highly popular Twilight movie franchise: Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart.
Of course there are many things that are radically different in Cosmopolis and On the Road. But, undeniably, there are enough similarities between the two movies for them to merit a comparison. Much like one could compare, say, the box office performance of Irene Dunne's Theodora Goes Wild and Carole Lombard's My Man Godfrey, even though the two 1936 screwball comedies were made at different studios, by different directors and screenwriters, and featured different stars, supporting players, and storylines.
Platform releases are those when a distributor “tests the box office waters” before spending extra cash opening the film in more markets / locations. In North America, Los Angeles and New York are the two urban centers – at times with the addition of Toronto – where micro-platform releases usually take place. (Image: Kristen Stewart On the Road, with Garrett Hedlund in the background.)
Movies distributed in that manner, such as Cosmopolis and On the Road, open at only a handful of theaters. If the per-theater averages are good – or great – the film expands; i.e., it opens in more theaters. But what's a “good” or “great” per-theater average? That depends on the exact number of venues; remember, all things being equal, the smaller the number of theaters the higher the per-theater average should be.
Different platform releases: On the Road vs. The Impossible
For comparison's sake: starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor, Juan Antonio Bayona's The Impossible opened in North America (coincidentally via Twilight's Summit Entertainment) on the same weekend as On the Road. The Impossible grossed $143,818 at 15 venues, averaging $9,588 per site. That's $300 less than On the Road. So, does that mean On the Road is the more successful movie? Not at all. Remember: On the Road was screening at four locations; The Impossible at 15 – that's nearly four times as many. Hence, if the two movies had the same level of box office success On the Road's per-theater average should have been much higher than The Impossible's.
If a film in platform release opens with a modest per-theater average – say, below $20,000-$30,000 for a movie at 2-6 locations – there's a very good chance that movie will have a small expansion. Or no expansion at all. At times, the distributor will merely keep the movie at a handful of theaters, but in different locations – e.g., dropping two New York venues while adding one venue in San Francisco and another in Denver; the next week, dropping San Francisco and Denver, while adding Miami and Detroit, and so on, for a few weeks.
The Cosmopolis case
That's basically what happened to Cosmopolis after its solid first-weekend take ($23,446 average at three sites as per Box Office Mojo) plummeted following the film's expansion to 63 locations on weekend no. 2 (a meager $2,429 per-theater average). Two weeks later, only 45 theaters were showing Cosmopolis in the U.S. Two weeks after that, only nine.
In sum, if a movie in platform release doesn't find its audience on its first or second weekend out, almost invariably it will either have a very small expansion or none at all. “Oh, but fans can't drive ten hours to watch a movie.” No, not fans who live in Utah and want to catch a movie in Los Angeles. But those fans who live in the L.A. area wouldn't have to drive that long, not even during rush hour. They are the target audience of platform releases. If those fans buy tickets, then distributors feel secure that more fans elsewhere will do the same; if they don't, distributors may not want to increase their distribution / marketing expenses to release potentially unprofitable movies in smaller markets.
The Kristen Stewart-Rupert Sanders 'Scandal'
In my On the Road box office post this past weekend, several commenters took umbrage with my remark that the Kristen Stewart-Rupert Sanders to-do helped Cosmopolis on its first weekend out in North America. Now, do I have hard proof that it did? Of course not. One would need to interview those people who bought tickets.
But stop and think for a moment: eOne Films is releasing Cosmopolis in the United States in mid-August. Following the scandal in late July, Robert Pattinson remains “in hiding” for several weeks and then resurfaces for the New York Cosmopolis premiere, and later is interviewed on Jon Stewart's The Daily Show. The global media covers the event as if it's the Second Coming.
Kristen Stewart and Rupert Sanders 'Scandal' and the box office
Are we to believe that Cosmopolis didn't have its visibility dramatically increased at the time? That countless people who had never heard of the film and couldn't care less about Robert Pattinson's romantic life or Twilight role suddenly became aware of the existence of Cosmopolis because of the Kristen Stewart-Rupert Sanders to-do? That a potentially wider audience was reached that could theoretically feel inclined to check out David Cronenberg's movie, whether because of Pattinson, Cronenberg, author Don DeLillo, the storyline, any of the film's supporting players, or all of the above? What's so far-fetched about that? (Image: Kristen Stewart On the Road New York premiere.)
That, in fact, might also help to explain Cosmopolis' dramatic box office drop on its second weekend. The ten-fold expansion came too soon, especially considering that the novelty had worn off; after all, Robert Pattinson had already made his television appearances and had rung the bell at the New York Stock Exchange the week before. Then what, without strong word of mouth and/or eOne's publicity machine working full force to maintain Cosmopolis in the public consciousness?
Hollywood scandals and the box office – and as movie history
But how dare I mention The Scandal? That should become as unutterable as certain slurs, spelled out like the S— word or something. Shouldn't we only discuss what takes place on screen and that's it? Well, I'm not sure in which galaxy you live, but on Planet Earth, what happens off screen affects – oftentimes radically so – what we get to watch on screen (and how we get to watch it, too).
Imagine someone discussing Cleopatra without mentioning the Elizabeth Taylor-Richard Burton affair and the behind-the-scenes goings-on. Or discussing Douglas Sirk's mother-daughter melo Imitation of Life, one of Universal's biggest pre-1960 hits, without mentioning Lana Turner's daughter fatally stabbing Turner's hoodlum lover Johnny Stompanato and the highly publicized trial that ensued. Or discussing Husbands and Wives without talking about the nasty Woody Allen-Mia Farrow breakup. Or, back to Elizabeth Taylor, talking about Cat on a Hot Tin Roof's stupendous box office performance without mentioning that the film opened at the height of the Elizabeth Taylor-Eddie Fisher-Debbie Reynolds to-do. The list goes on.
'The Scandal' and On the Road
Now, unlike some ardent Pattinson / Cosmopolis “defenders” insist, I don't believe the scandal helped On the Road for the simple fact that Walter Salles' movie opened five months later. The scandal is now old news. Had On the Road opened back in August, I'm quite sure its opening-weekend box office results would have been more impressive.
Oh, but Kristen Stewart was recently featured in all those premieres and awards-season roundtables and photo-ops. Yes, mostly followed by her fans, spread out all over the world. What would have truly helped On the Road at this time of year, in Los Angeles and in New York City, would have been strong local reviews; tons of billboards, and TV, print, and online ads; plus a few awards here and there. None of that happened.
Box Office reports
But why discuss box office reports? Who cares about box office grosses? Cosmopolis is a great movie. On the Road is a wonderful movie. What does it matter if Cosmopolis bombed in the United States and failed to get even close to reaching its $20 million budget at the worldwide box office? What does it matter if On the Road opened with highly disappointing figures in North America and may have failed to even match half its budget at the global box office?
Well, I'm sure that those films' investors and distributors think it matters. That David Cronenberg and Robert Pattinson and Walter Salles and Garrett Hedlund and Sam Riley and Kristen Stewart probably think it matters as well.
As for those who don't care, well, they should simply avoid reading box office articles. That would take care of their problem – because we certainly don't have an issue with that subject matter. And remember: No box office (and/or ancillary revenues) = no movies. If you believe it's all about “art,” then I have a couple of bridges, half a dozen mountains, and one huge waterfall to sell you.
Oh, well … This turned out to be much longer than the comments section in my On the Road post published last weekend. But that's life.
Kristen Stewart On the Road New York premiere photo via the On the Road Facebook page / IFC Films.
Kristen Stewart and Garrett Hedlund On the Road photo: IFC Films.
Robert Pattinson Cosmopolis photo: eOne Films.
Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley On the Road photo: IFC Films.
Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley, Kristen Stewart On the Road down
Directed by The Motorcycle Diaries and Central Station's Walter Salles, and featuring Garrett Hedlund, Sam Riley, Kristen Stewart, Viggo Mortensen, Kirsten Dunst, Amy Adams, and others, On the Road was down a relatively steep 36 percent on its second weekend out, Dec. 28-30, according to box office estimates found at Deadline.com. (Image: Kristen Stewart, Sam Riley On the Road.)
Note: Deadline.com's estimates for last weekend ($10,800) were higher than those found at Box Office Mojo ($9,888) – which has yet to report On the Road's box office gross this weekend. The 36 percent drop-off rate is based on Box Office Mojo's Dec. 21-23 figures, used in our previous On the Road box-office piece (see further above); had I used Deadline's estimate, the film's drop would have been steeper: 41 percent.
IFC Films is reportedly still planning to expand On the Road to more venues come January and February 2013. But considering the film's box office grosses on its first two weekends out in North America – $96,200 after collecting $25,600 this weekend – barring a miraculous surge, On the Road's expansion will be both modest and short-lived. It'll be an uphill drive for the movie to reach $1 million in the U.S. and Canada.
Naomi Watts, Ewan McGregor The Impossible up; Jean-Louis-Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva Amour steady
If Deadline.com's estimates are on target, On the Road's North American box office performance on its second weekend out was particularly disappointing when compared to those of other holdovers.
Directed by Juan Antonio Bayona, the tsunami family drama The Impossible was up an impressive 29 percent from last weekend according to studio estimates found at Box Office Mojo. Starring SAG Award nominee Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor, The Impossible added an estimated $185,000 this weekend at 15 locations (the same number of venues as last week). Cume after 10 days: $485,000.
I should add that The Impossible is the highest-grossing movie of the year at the Spanish box office: $52.99 million, far ahead of the no. 2 movie, Bill Condon's The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2, starring On the Road's Kristen Stewart, alongside Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner, which has earned $27.95 million.
I should also add that Juan Antonio Bayona had a previous no. 1 hit at the Spanish box office: the atmospheric psychological / horror drama The Orphanage / El Orfanato, starring Belén Rueda, which scored $37.72 million in 2007. And that The Impossible is Spain's second biggest box office blockbuster in the last ten years, behind James Cameron / Sam Worthington Avatar, which grossed a gigantic $109.99 million in late 2009 / early 2010.
Another strong holdover in North America was Michael Haneke's Palme d'Or and European Film Award winner Amour, featuring Jean-Louis Trintignant, Emmanuelle Riva, and Isabelle Huppert. At three locations, Amour earned $60,000 – down only 12 percent compared to a week ago. The story of an elderly couple facing illness and death, Amour has raked in an estimated $217,800 after ten days.
Kathryn Bigelow Zero Dark Thirty slows down – but remains far ahead
And finally, Kathryn Bigelow's controversial Zero Dark Thirty, about the hunt for Osama bin Laden, continues far ahead of the “specialty” pack. Featuring Jessica Chastain, Jason Clarke, Joel Edgerton, Édgar Ramírez, and Jennifer Ehle, Zero Dark Thirty scored an estimated $315,000 at five locations, averaging a highly impressive $63,000 per site.
Now, the not-so-good news: despite free publicity from outraged political pundits, the U.S. government, and the CIA; lots of awards-season / Oscar buzz; and the fact that Zero Dark Thirty opened on a Wednesday – i.e., its box office take last weekend was more subdued than it would have been otherwise – the Bigelow-directed, Mark Boal-written political thriller was still down 23 percent. Reportedly budgeted at $40m, Zero Dark Thirty's cume stands at $1.36 million after 12 days.
On the Road box office article initially posted by André Soares.
Photo: Kristen Stewart, Sam Riley On the Road photo: IFC Films.