Monday Morning Quarterback Part II
By BOP Staff
September 30, 2015
Kim Hollis: The Green Inferno, a horror film from Eli Roth, earned $3.5 million this weekend. What do you think of this result?
Edwin Davies: This is okay for a film that had very low risks and costs assigned to it. It sat on the shelf for about three years owing to problems with the original distributor, and Blumhouse picked it up pretty cheap and spent a small amount of money on a digital marketing campaign, so no one involved needed it to be a breakout hit. Within its limited parameters, this is a decent result for a gory, not particularly good horror film which might make a small profit in theatres, but almost certainly will on home media. My main takeaway from this is the realization that this is the first Eli Roth-directed film to come out in eight years. He's been so active as a producer that it doesn't feel like that long.
Ryan Kyle: This is a pretty terrible result for a horror film and in my opinion this "new" distribution plan they are "experimenting" with is just pure BS and spin. The film was on the shelf for so long that all the film festival interest it had garnered dissipated. The producers decided to cut their losses and spend as little on ads as possible and release it in just above the contractual amount of 1500 locations. The C- Cinemascore is frightening and the 17% drop from Friday-to-Saturday is far from settling for an original film. Even at a peanuts budget, no money will be made here, as I doubt Inferno will be able to blaze past $10 million, especially since Roth has another film opening in two weekends from now, Knock Knock (although it will have a simultaneous VOD debut as well).
Kim Hollis: I don’t know why anyone would have expected it to do better. It’s a release that sat on the shelf and that Blumhouse picked up for a song. They’ll make the majority of their dollars from home video, and I’m sure the studio will be fine with it. Eli Roth’s brand of horror is pretty far on the outs with fans of the genre, which is why it looks like his next film, Knock Knock will receive a limited release alongside on-demand. It's probably the right approach to reach that very limited audience
David Mumpower: I'll say what the world needs to hear. Eli Roth is the greatest threat to mankind in the history of human existence. His bloodlust is unquenchable. He hungers for the suffering of others, and all his productions reflect his black heart. STOP GIVING HIM MONEY, PEOPLE!
Kim Hollis: Sicario broke into the top 10 despite being on only 59 screens. It earned $1.7 million, good for a per venue average of $29,107. Where do you think this one is headed, both financially and as an awards contender?
Edwin Davies: This puts Sicario in a very good place financially. The buzz around it is deafening, which means that a lot of cinephiles will be clamoring to see it, but it's also an exciting genre film that could appeal to people who want to watch a good thriller. That combination of quality and thrills could help it break out in a major way, assuming that the content doesn't scare more squeamish audiences away.
In terms of awards contention, I'm not sure how well the film will do generally because there are a lot of big hitters to come. Currently, it looks like it a strong contender for a Best Picture nomination, depending on the size of the field, but its strongest possibility will probably be a Best Actress nomination for Emily Blunt, who has been universally cited for her work in the film, and maybe a Best Supporting Actor nod for Benicio Del Toro.
Ryan Kyle: This is an absolutely fantastic result for Lionsgate; a studio that isn't as well-versed in platform releases compared to The Weinstein Company, Fox Searchlight, Focus, etc. As we have seen this year so far from Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, it is hard to platform a film fest favorite to a general audience that just isn't cinephiles. The buzz is extreme and puts Sicario in a very good place to have a long play in theaters, slowly collecting its fortune as bigger films like The Walk, The Martian, and Steve Jobs open.
Kim Hollis: It’s an amazing result for a film with a lot of talk surrounding it. I think a lot of people are intrigued by it since it features Emily Blunt in the center of an action/thriller, a genre typically dominated by men. I expect to see its momentum continue as it expands, and if it performs well in more venues, it’s going to be hard to argue against it as an awards contender.
David Mumpower: This is a strange comparison, but Sicario is starting to remind me of The Usual Suspects. That's a 20-year old film that had a similar behavior. It started as a virtually unknown product that built a hefty buzz solely due to its quality. The type of buzz we're witnessing occurs only once every few years, and it's the organic type that requires epic word-of-mouth. We're just scratching the surface on what the film will do in terms of both box office and awareness. Once it reaches that next level, it'll level up again.