What would you expect?
Left-leaning magazine The Atlantic and conservative blog Fox Nation captured the limited release of "Undefeated"--the documentary that offers a glowing chronicle of Sarah Palin's political career--in headlines that couldn't be more opposite one another.
So did the Palin doc flop or not in its opening weekend? Both, sort of. The Atlantic's article, as stated in their headline, is based on a first-person account of the movie's barren opening in Orange County, Calif. Fox Nation's post, however, rests its claim on the fact that showings for the film in Grapevine, Texas, were sold out. It's worth noting that Palin is employed by Fox News.
But the most complete version of the story comes from The Hollywood Reporter:
"Undefeated" grossed $60,000 to $75,000, meaning a per-screen average of $6,000 or $7,500, the measure by which limited openings are judged. A screen average below $10,000 is considered mediocre.
At the same time, Undefeated isn’t the usual release and may not play by the rules.
Distributor ARC Entertainment and Cinedigm Entertainment rushed the documentary into digital-only theaters and relied on social media to market the pic, versus a traditional media spend.
"We didn't put a nickel of P&A into this and the distributor had the movie for only three weeks. To describe this as anything but a hit is inaccurate,” director-writer Stephen Bannon told The Hollywood Reporter on Sunday.
“We took out only one ad, which is what AMC required of us. We did a high-risk thing. I wanted to see how we could open on word-of-mouth and social media,” said Bannon.
Bannon also said the numbers are misleading, given the small theaters where Undefeated played.