Controversial comedy to haul in $3-4 million over holiday

Posted Dec 25, 2014 by Tim O'Brien
UPDATE: "The Interview" took in over $1 million on Christmas, but no sales figures are available for the various streaming services.
Sony hack headaches.
Sony hack headaches.
Box Office Mojo
The real winner was "Unbroken" with $15.59 million and "Into the Woods" with "$15.04 million. Xbox and Playstation experienced denial of services on Christmas as hackers interfered with them.
EARLIER: With Sony's decision to release "The Interview," there still are a few remaining questions to be answered. Some are rhetorical, of course.
The Wrap is reporting brisk sales as Christmas arrives. Also, they not it is doing well for other showings throughout the weekend.
Some theaters, which were never going to show it to begin with, will now see success with it, too. Those indie theaters showing it number right around 331. The Wrap is reporting that the film will take in between $3-4 million. That is not much considering all of the headlines it made. This one is in for the long haul now, however. It may not make up its budget and headaches, however.
But, will this actually help or hamper the rest of the films out? That is yet to be answered. But going in, the original release date of Christmas was not going to be overwhelming for that particular film, as it is a crowded. Now, look at this. No other films are really getting the attention that a mediocre comedy is enjoying.
It was the video-on-demand issue that kept theater chains away for now. Why put a movie in a theater when it is available on all formats at the same time? There will likely come a day when this is the norm, and perhaps this will set the stage for that.
If this was all a ploy, it worked to a certain level. But, no way it was intentional because of those nasty emails. A ploy would never expose that, unless a revenge factor played out. Sony endured layoffs in 2014 and North Korea has a weak Internet and its servers go through China.
Now, will the take from the online streaming services be added into this total. If it does, would that be fare to the other films?
Weekend, with updates numbers
1. "Unbroken" - 3,131 theaters
1. "The Gambler" - 2,478 theaters
2. "Into the Woods" - 2,440 theaters
3. "Big Eyes" - 1,307 theaters
4. "The Imitation Game" - 747 theaters, expansion
5. "The Interview" - 331 theaters
6. "Selma" - 19 theaters
7. "American Sniper " - 4 theaters
It is a crowded field with new releases. Add in the others out and the choices are all around, yet, that oddball comedy gets all the headlines. That is too bad when the others are award season-worthy.
EARLIER, recap:
The list of theaters showing the controversial film "The Interview" is at 300, (not including You Tube or VOD). Its Christmas day release is now all the buzz, like it or not.
For more in-depth theater talk on this, head to The Wrap, as they update often on this.
As if it was playing out like a screenplay with plenty of plot twists, the deadline to book "The Interview" was set. There were plenty of takers, and others may follow in the weeks ahead.
Sony has announced today (Dec. 24) that they will upload "The Interview" to You Tube. Now, in theaters and offered up on You Tube for a movie that would have never gotten this much attention had it gone on as scheduled.
As the uproar, fallout and confusion continues for Sony, it turns out the film "The Interview" will have its release on Christmas day, after all. But, a very limited run.
Going in, "The Interview" was projected to take in around $20 million, which is a so-so holiday release. For a comedy, not bad, but not good. And it would have simply sunk away like any other mediocre comedy. Now, it is infamous, like it or not.
There will now not be a demand later for VOD as it is already there. The lesson is, will this change the way movies are released?