June 5, 2023

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Hypnotic Marks Career – Worst Opening for Robert Rodriguez, Ben Affleck – The Hollywood Reporter


It’s unusual, to say the least, that a film directed by the likes of Robert Rodriguez and starring Ben Affleck could hardly be on the radar of new blockbusters opening the box office.

This lack of awareness helps explain why hypnotic It opened to $2.4 million from 2,118 theaters during the weekend of May 14-16 marking the worst opening nationwide for any film directed by Rodriguez or starring Affleck. hypnotic It would lose tens of millions, having cost $65 million to make, and reinforces what every savvy Hollywood studio executive knows: Marketing spending is essential.

The sci-fi action-thriller suffered several setbacks on the road to the big screen, culminating in the late 2021 collapse of Solstice Studios, which was due to be marketed and released.

Solstice, led by veteran Mark Gill, was counting on it hypnotic to shape its future. But the young company was derailed by the pandemic despite modest success in 2000 unhinged. (The Russell Crowe road-rage has done relatively well in theaters considering the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.)

Months earlier, Solstice had entered into a strategic partnership with Jeff Robinov Studios 8 and hypnotic It was their first project together (the two worked together when Robinov was head of production at Warner Bros. and Gil headed Warner Independent).

Solstice was tasked with marketing the film and handling distribution in the United States, along with international sales. The film aroused great interest among foreign buyers, who put a significant share of the film’s $65 million budget after making sure it would get a US release in more than 2,000 locations.

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But when the solstice command deviated, hypnotic It seemingly disappeared from the radar until earlier this year, when foreign buyers attending the Berlin Film Festival market were told that the boutiques Ketchup came on board as a US distributor.

Ketchup did not respond to requests for comment.

The film was shown at South by Southwest earlier this year as a work-in-progress and opened in the US ahead of its international premiere at midnight at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival. (No doubt, the film’s financiers are hoping the Cannes slot will help sales. foreign box office).

In the United States, the marketing campaign for hypnotic It was minimal at best, with Affleck himself not doing the pressure. Insiders speculate that the film’s release date attempted to pander to the marketing campaign of airAffleck’s hit sports drama that got an exclusive premiere in theaters ahead of its Prime Video debut over the weekend.

in hypnotic, Affleck plays Detective Danny Rourke, who ponders the unsolved kidnapping of his 7-year-old daughter and tries to find out which forces are responsible. It also stars Alice Braga and William Fichtner.

To date, 1998 ghosts It marks the lowest opening wide of Avec’s career ($3 million), followed by 2003 Gigli ($3.8 million), according to Comscore and not adjusted for inflation. Width in this case is defined as 1500 screens or more.