The Four Feathers

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  • Directed By: Shekhar Kapur
  • Written By: Michael Schiffer, Hossein Amini
  • Release Date: September 20, 2002
  • Domestic Distributor: Paramount
  • Cast: Heath Ledger, Wes Bentley, Kate Hudson

Box Office Info:
Budget: $80 millionFinanced by: Miramax; Paramount
Domestic Box Office: $18,306,166Overseas Box Office: $11,576,479


The Four Feathers was co-financed by Miramax and Paramount and all revenue was to be split evenly between the two companies.  Miramax handled overseas sales to distributors and packaged The Four Feathers with Scary Movie 2, Dracula 2000 and Equilibrium for buyers at the 2000 Mifed marketplace — and sold out all markets on each project.  Paramount handled domestic distribution duties.

The budget went awry during a difficult production, which was so disorganized and chaotic that the two studios had to call in the bond company CCI to oversee the shoot.  The budget for The Four Feathers rose to north of $80 million and this ended as one of the largest financial disasters on record.

Paramount first dated The Four Feathers for September 13, 2002 and then pushed it back a week to September 20.  It bowed against Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever, Trapped and The Banger Sisters — which oddly enough pit The Four Feathers co-star Kate Hudson against her mother Goldie Hawn’s picture.

The Four Feathers was booked into 1,912 theaters and was hurt by mixed to poor reviews.  It was dead on arrival with $6,857,879 — placing #5 for the slow weekend led by the holdover Barbershop.  Paramount added 275 locations the following weekend and saw diminishing returns with a 48.1% decline to $3,556,687.  The domestic run closed with a terrible $18,306,166.  Paramount/Miramax would see returned about $10 million after theaters take their percentage of the gross, which leaves much of their P&A expenses in the red.

The Four Feathers was dumped in most overseas markets, where it pulled in just $11,576,479 in receipts.  Paramount packaged The Four Feathers with the more successful Miramax co-production The Hours and seven other Paramount titles released between 1990 and 1994, to the A&E network for $6 million.

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