Posted without comment from Nikki Finke):
I’m told #7 Stop-Loss opened to only $1.6 million Friday from just 1,291 plays and should eke out $4+M. Although the drama from MTV Films was the best-reviewed movie opening this weekend, Paramount wasn’t expecting much because no Iraq war-themed movie has yet to perform at the box office. “It’s not looking good,” a studio source told me before the weekend. “No one wants to see Iraq war movies. No matter what we put out there in terms of great cast or trailers, people were completely turned off. It’s a function of the marketplace not being ready to address this conflict in a dramatic way because the war itself is something that’s unresolved yet. It’s a shame because it’s a good movie that’s just ahead of its time.”
OK, I lied, I’m going to comment – from Box Office Mojo, opening US weekends:
Lions for Lambs $6,702,434 (2,215 theaters, $3,025 average)
In The Valley of Elah $1,512,310 (wide, 762 theaters, $1,984 average)
Redacted $25,628 (15 theaters, $1,708 average)
Grace is Gone $13,880 (4 theaters, $3,470 average)
Rendition $4,060,012 (2,250 theaters, $1,804 average)
So obviously no one wants to see movies on the War on Terror.
Well, maybe not:
The Kingdom $17,135,055 (2,793 theaters, $6,135 average)
Maybe, just maybe, the audiences don’t see ‘addressing the conflict in a realistic way‘ the same way that the studios do. Maybe, just maybe, we don’t have to be the bad guys. Just a thought.