In terms of specialty box office over the weekend, the death of Nelson Mandela last week Thursday, may have drawn some added attention to The Weinstein Company’s biopic Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, which continued into its 2nd week in release, still in only 4 theaters, grossing $77,652, for a per screen average of $19,413, and a total gross so far of $183,368.
A Strong 2nd Week For 'Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom' While Spike Lee's 'Oldboy' Tanks
It saw a tiny 7% drop in ticket sales from its weekend’s opening, considering that it’s screening in the same number of theaters. It’s a surprise the TWC didn’t expand it further to a larger number of theaters across the country, something that’s typically done after opening weekend. And as callous as it might sound, exploiting tragedy for profit isn’t beyond the capabilities of those who are in the business of entertainment. It happens often.
According to Box Office Mojo, TWC will expand the film nationwide during the week of Christmas, which is still 2 weeks away. I wouldn’t be shocked if that expansion happens sooner.
But the film is doing well with strong per screen averages and that should continue in light of current events.
Meanwhile Spike Lee’s Oldboy “reinterpretation” continues its very weak performance, dropping over 66% in its second week in release, making a sad $296,000 total, with a per screen average of just $508. Its total gross so far is $1.95 million, which is abysmal, considering that its budget was $30 million. It’s safe to say that it won’t be making its money back.