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Sarah Palin's "Undefeated" Defeated at Box Office, Finally

by Anthony Kaufman
July 25, 2011 12:10 PM
14 Comments
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I hate to beat a dead horse, but "The Undefeated," the Sarah Palin documentary, has finally been revealed as the modest box office performer that it always was. After all the misinformation and factual mangling typical of the extreme right that occurred after the film's opening weekend -- with per-theater averages initially reported from $7,500 to $10,000, then revised down to $6,513 -- the film's second weekend was a major disappointment, with an average of just $1,713, across 14 theaters. In the film business, we might call "The Undefeated" a movie with short theatrical "legs."

The film's total box office amounted to just $101,000, as of Sunday the 24th. According to Box Office Mojo, that puts it 57th among theatrically released "political documentaries," and 397th for all docs.

Now the Fox News Nation spin machine has immediately embraced the film's DVD, on-demand and pay-per-view release as its natural home.

In a press release, Glenn Bracken Evans, the film’s producer, said, “A traditional windowed release would not have allowed us to maximize viewership of this highly sought after film."

Frankly, I'd agree, and we shouldn't underestimate the audience that the film will find on ancillary outlets (the film's director. after all, used to run Genius Projects), but it's funny, just two weekends ago they were all touting the theatrical release as a major event. How quickly things change.


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14 Comments

  • Who Cares | July 27, 2011 10:54 AMReply

    Yawn. If I want to see Palin, which I really don't, I can always turn to CNN and see her ugly mug for free. Why pay one red cent to see that old gray mare?

  • Helene | July 27, 2011 9:45 AMReply

    It about time people woke up to these grifters. Fleeceing her flock for their hard earned cash to have these wasilly hillbillys live high off the hog, SaraPAC donations keep her going, a millionair. If she ran for Pres. she will not be able to use it for her life of luxury. She uses her generic God to get her flock to trust her while she laughs all the way to the bank. She is no Christian, she's a greedy,old sleeze bag.
    The Republicans want to destroy Obama, and will take down this country to do it. Palins the same.The super rich are the winners, and winner take all.

  • Marianne | July 25, 2011 9:10 AMReply

    As a film professional, I saw this coming. Whatever one thinks of the subject (and I say the subject is intriguing, and with the right people, production values and marketing campaign, might have worked), this was a case of a bunch of amateurs making and marketing a stinker.

    The Palinistas were duped. Arc relied 100% on them to do Arc's job. Which they did, but it still wasn't good enough, because that "new" (read "cheap") marketing could never have resulted in a break-out. In fact, I was surprised they added six new screens (noting they lost two - in Indiana and Missouri - states which voted for McCain/Palin). That's how bad both the film and the marketing/distribution were. What's even more telling - AMC is HQ'ed in KC - one of the opening markets which cancelled after the first weekend. That's really bad. Really, really bad. The movie itself is a dog; I could have made a better movie with a tenth of the budget, with my eyes closed.

    Now here's the problem for the Palinistas - you guys put so much stock in this turkey, there will probably never be another opportunity to make a GOOD movie about Sarah Palin. In this industry, you usually get one shot and if you blow it - well...it's Sarah's fault, really, because she fell for Bannon's BS line. She could have refused, she should have refused. Now, she just looks like a has-been with a messiah complex. If you thought Sarah Palin was a joke before, now it has been confirmed. It didn't have to be that way, but Palin doesn't have the common sense or the good advice to avoid disasters like this.

  • Brandt Hardin | July 25, 2011 8:01 AMReply

    Sarah will never sell herself short. This film is simply another publicity stunt to make Palin what she really wants…. not the presidency, but cold hard CASH. Palin is for $ale and is making it rich on your dime with every book, speaking engagement, and movie ticket that markets her image and sells her looks (it’s certainly not her choice of words which got her this far.) Check out this very scandalous portrait of her erotically rolling in the dough on my artist’s blog at http://dregstudiosart.blogspot.com/2011/06/ecstasy-of-sarah-palin_15.html

  • Mary | July 25, 2011 7:14 AMReply

    Green Eagle,

    "Yeah, to a mere $148 million dollars, or 6,167 times what Undefeated took in."

    Try Harry Potter on 11,000 screens vs The Undefeated on 10 screens.

  • Jerry | July 25, 2011 7:10 AMReply

    Will,
    The controversial hoax film the Inconvenient Truth has been banned from public schools.

    If success is Obama, I want my ticket refunded.

  • Green Eagle | July 25, 2011 7:01 AMReply

    "Huh. Of course the media neglects to mention that the new Harry Potter movie’s second week sales are off 71.6%."

    Yeah, to a mere $148 million dollars, or 6,167 times what Undefeated took in.

    This film did not do "better than expected," it collapsed. As for having short legs, it makes a corgi look like it's on stilts.

    It was a colossal failure, and shows that the whole tea party movement is largely a carefully crafted, corporate financed fiction.

  • Tea Party Douce Bags | July 25, 2011 6:58 AMReply

    Nobody thinks this Tea Bagger is worth the shit she is made up of.

  • Donna | July 25, 2011 6:56 AMReply

    Total failures do not make good box office. Sarah Palin is so dumb she can't think straight until talking in tongues with the devil. She is what is bad with our country. She should just go away. Everything isn't all about her and her dumb family.

  • Will | July 25, 2011 6:08 AMReply

    I don't care how you slice it, 1,700 per screen average is really bad... Art house doc, political of whatever. It's just not good theatrical numbers.

    And from what I saw it seems like a lot of those theaters were targeted to middle America except a few screens on the coasts.

    On top of that, Undefeated had very Potter-esque drop (though as Anthony noted big budget and political doc cant be compared) of around 75% from first week to second. To compare to something similar An Inconvenient Truth which opened with a stellar $70k per screen on 4 screens and then the next week increased it's venues by 73 screens and still maintained a $17k average on those. That's a successful release.

  • Peter Formaini | July 25, 2011 5:58 AMReply

    Ah - you right-wingers - as always - live in a dream world - where failure is success and empty theatres are 'expected'.

    Here - let me show you what a REAL success is:

    http://www.boxofficemojo.com/movies/?page=weekend&id=brokebackmountain.htm

  • Mary | July 25, 2011 4:42 AMReply

    Anthony, all movies drop after the first week. Millions were spent advertizing Harry Potter. "The Undefeated" had no promotional support at all. The movie was run at AMC, not at independent theater or art houses. In fact it did better than expected on its second week on such short notice and limited screens without promotional advertizing.

  • anthony | July 25, 2011 4:00 AMReply

    Mary, you can't compare a Hollywood release with a limited release. Big budget blockbusters always drop from 50-70% during their second weekends, but independent and smaller art-house titles usually do not suffer the same precipitous drops. In fact, if there's momentum on a film -- which Tea Party activists claimed incessantly about Undefeated on their websites -- then the movie's grosses should have actually increased in its second weekend. You need to face the facts: the movie was not a theatrical success.

  • Mary | July 25, 2011 2:57 AMReply

    Huh. Of course the media neglects to mention that the new Harry Potter movie's second week sales are off 71.6%.

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