I didn’t realize how terribly Frost/Nixon had done at the box office. Less than $15 million! Jeez, if you added up the value of all the Frost/Nixon advertisements I have personally seen, it would come close to $15 million. Somebody lost their shirt on this one; probably their shorts, too. You could have made more money renting out theaters as places for weary travelers to sleep.*
When your advertisements tell people that you’ve made a movie about the fact that some people in Hollywood don’t like Richard Nixon, one should expect this type of response. All of the old Nixon haters are dead or too old to go to theaters; all of the young hippies are curious why the movie isn’t called Frost/Bush.
Though that might not have done too well either. Despite a ridiculous media blitz during the most politicized year in living memory, W. was the 104th best grossing moving of 2008. I originally thought boxofficemojo had screwed up and not listed it, until I saw that their first page only listed the top 100. Of course, it was a big hit compared to Frost/Nixon.
*And, somehow, Frost/Nixon is only the fourth worst grosser of the Best Picture nominees; The Reader makes Frost/Nixon look like, um, well, a movie that people saw. A few weeks ago, I actually got a phone call from Sid Ganis advising me that a 30-second clip of my cat I took using my digital camera – GracieCoughsHairball3.avi – had been nominated for Best Picture, but I declined and suggested they nominate something that had reached a larger audience. Hence, The Reader. That’s a true story.
P.S. Paul Blart: Mall Cop has been the #1 movie for three consecutive weekends.