Unleashed

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  • Directed By: Louis Leterrier
  • Written By: Luc Besson
  • Release Date: May 13, 2005
  • Domestic Distributor: Focus (Rogue)
  • Cast: Jet Li, Morgan Freeman, Bob Hoskins

Box Office Info:
Budget: $43 millionFinanced by: EuropaCorp; TF1 Films; Qian Yang Intl.; Canal+
Domestic Gross: $24,537,621Overseas Gross: $26,333,492

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Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp arranged the financing on Unleashed (released as Danny The Dog in most of the world) with a $43 million budget, which at the time was one of the more expensive exports from France.  EuropaCorp was expanding the budgets of their productions to have more global appeal and their business model was to have 80% of the costs covered by pre-sales.  Additional coin was provided by TF1 Films, Qian Yang Intl. and Canal+.  Universal’s specialty division Focus Features took Unleashed for US distribution and then Focus launched their genre division Rogue in 2004 — which kicked off with Shaun of the Dead and Seed Of Chucky and Unleashed would go out through Rogue.  Universal took rights for the U.K., Germany, Australia and New Zealand.

Rogue originally scheduled Unleashed for release on April 8 but bumped it back to May 13, where it would court male auds against the femme skewing Monster-in-Law and the family pic Kicking And Screaming.  The long delayed and little buzzed Mindhunters also bowed.  Reviews were lukewarm and Unleashed was booked into 1,957 locations and took in an underwhelming $10,900,901 — placing #3 for the weekend led by Monster-in-Law.  The following weekend Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith entered the market and took most of the box office to itself and Unleashed sank 62.2% to $4,123,556.  It declined 54.3% to $1,886,465 in its third frame and promptly lost most of its theater count.  The US run closed with $24,537,621.  Focus would see returned about $13.4 million after theaters take their percentage of the gross — which would not cover their P&A expenses and unreported acquisition cost.

EuropaCorp distributed in France, which posted the highest overseas gross at $5.3M.  Most markets pulled in poor numbers and Universal saw returns of only $2.5M in the UK and $2.9M in Germany.  The offshore total was $26.3M across numerous distributors.

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