Monday, April 28, 2014

Trio of Faith-Based Films Top $150M at Box Office

Three films with a strong Christian message have scored remarkably well at the domestic box office so far in 2014.

"Heaven Is For Real" took in $13.8 million over the weekend, bringing its two-week total to $51.9 million. It finished No. 3 at the box office.

"God's Not Dead" was No. 11 at the box office, earning $2.8 million over the weekend, bringing it's six-week total to $52.7 million. (The film cost a mere $2 million to make, giving it the distinction of being the most profitable film of 2014.

And let's not forget "Son of God," which has been out for nine weeks and has earned $59.5 million at the box-office, another remarkable feat, considering the movie is a re-edited version of the TV mini-series, "The Bible."

Perhaps the heathens who run Hollywood will take notice that faith-based films have a place in American society.

Monday, April 21, 2014

The rapid decline of M. Night Shyamalan

M. Night Shyamalan made a great movie in 1999 called "The Sixth Sense," followed by two good movies "Unbreakable" in 2000 and "Signs" in 2002, followed by a fair movie, "The Village" in 2004.

Since then, he has made four of the worst movies of all time: "Lady in the Water" in 2006, "The Happening" in 2008, "The Last Airbender" in 2010 and "After Earth" in 2013. Not only have the last four movies been critical failures, but they've also bombed at the box office. The trend is clear and it's been downhill for the Philadelphia-area director over past decade.

So why would Philadelphia Magazine put the director/writer on its most recent cover, which it dubbed the "power issue" along with several other prominent Philadelphia-area power brokers? It appears the editors of the magazine are stuck in 1999. If the guy can't sell tickets to his movies, what makes the editors think he's going to sell magazines? Not only has Shyamalan's influence declined rapidly in Hollywood, but another clunker at the box-office and he might be filming infomercials in the near future.

I point to an article by Kyle Buchanan about Shymalan's rapid decline as a filmmaker:
Ten years ago, M. Night Shyamalan was on top of the world, touted as “the next Spielberg” by Newsweek and fresh off a string of successes including the Oscar-nominated smash The Sixth Sense, the Bruce Willis superhero origin story Unbreakable, and the alien thriller Signs, which would be Mel Gibson’s last studio hit. But things have changed: The filmmaker who could once open a movie on his moniker alone has a new film coming out today, the sci-fi story After Earth, where his name doesn’t appear in the key marketing materials at all. It’s only the latest setback for Shyamalan, whose career woes have been compounded by giddy press reports chronicling his fall from grace, including a memorable round of media attention in 2010 when audiences supposedly booed his title card in the trailer for the horror film Devil, which Shyamalan produced. Where did it all go wrong?

'Heaven Is For Real' earns $21.5M over Easter weekend

Christian-themed films continue to do well at the box-office.

"Heaven Is For Real" is the latest hit, earning $21.5 million over the Easter weekend. The film opened in the middle of last week and has a total domestic gross of $28.5 million in its first five days. With a production budget of $12 million, "Heaven Is For Real" has already recouped its money.

"God's Not Dead" continued to score with audiences, earning $4.8 million over the Easter weekend, bringing its five-week total to $48.3 million. That's a remarkable showing for a film that cost just $2 million to make and has had little publicity. But audiences are finding it.

Another remarkable box-office story is "Son of God," the re-edited version of the History Channel's "The Bible" mini-series. "Son of God" has earned $59.4 million over the past eight weeks.

And then there's "Noah" which cost $125 million to make but has grossed just $93.2 million in four weeks. So much for anti-Christian Hollywood bragging that this film was directed by an atheist and it avoided mentioning the word "God" at any point.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Faith-based films earn $100M at the box-office

Two movies with Christian themes have sold a combined $100 million in tickets at the box-office so far in 2014. (And we're talking about 'Noah' a film written and directed by an avowed atheist who never mentions the word "God" in the movie.)

"Son of God" has earned $59.1 million going into the Easter weekend. "God's Not Dead" has earned $42.8 million going into the Easter weekend.

Monday, April 7, 2014

'God's Not Dead' a surprise box-office smash

While "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" was setting box-office records over the weekend, a lesser-known film starring former "Hercules" star Kevin Sorbo, could end up being the most profitable film of 2014.

Sure the Disney/Marvel "Captain America" sequel took in $95 million in its opening weekend, but the film cost $170 million to make.

The film perched at No. 4 in this weekend's box-office list is "God's Not Dead," which earned another $7.7 million to bring its three-week total to $32.5 million. And how much did "God's Not Dead" cost to make? A paltry $2 million, which probably covered the catering bill for "Captain America."

"God's Not Dead" added nearly 600 new theaters over the weekend and continued to take in a healthy $4,414 per screen.

So while "Captain America" will need another couple of weeks just to earn back its production costs, the faith-based "God's Not Dead"is earning record profits for an independent film.