Rendition

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  • Directed By: Gavin Hood
  • Written By: Kelley Sane
  • Release Date: October 19, 2007
  • Domestic Distributor: New Line
  • Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Reese Witherspoon, Meryl Streep

Box Office Info:
Budget: $27.5 millionFinanced by: New Line; Level 1 Entertainment
Domestic Box Office: $9,736,045Overseas Box Office: $17,302,687

rendition 2007 film
Kelley Sane’s Rendition screenplay was acquired by New Line in May 2006 for just under $1 million.  The budget for Rendition was $27.5 million and it was co-financed by New Line and Level 1 Entertainment.   As per New Line’s usual financing model, the mini-major sold off most overseas rights, which would reduce their exposure to the budget.

New Line first dated the picture for October 12, 2007 and then pushed it back one week to Oct 19.  After a string of ‘war on terror’ films that flopped at the box office, including In The Valley Of Elah a month earlier, New Line’s marketing tried to be clear that movie was not about the Iraq War and tried to showcase it as a thriller with an all-star cast.  Rendition also premiered early in September at the Toronto International Film Festival and any heat the project had was cooled after mixed reviews.

Rendition bowed against 30 Days Of Night, The Comebacks and Gone Baby Gone.  The marketplace was also saturated with adult fare like Michael Clayton and along with Gone Baby Gone, they would siphon what little audience there was for Rendition.

It was booked into 2,250 theaters and was dead on arrival with $4,060,012 — placing #9 for the slow weekend led by 30 Days of Night.  The film declined 41.6% to $2,372,487 in its second weekend and then promptly lost most of its theater count.  It was pulled out of release after its fourth week with a total of $9,736,045.  New Line would see returned about $5.3 million after theaters take their percentage of the gross, leaving most of the P&A spend at a loss.

The movie did little business overseas and pulled in $17.3 million.  Entertainment Film Distributors, who handle New Line’s UK releases, saw the largest numbers with a mediocre $5,253,314.  Rendition went straight to video in Russia.

New Line had a generally poor year in 2007 and inexplicably fired their long term marketing chief Russell Schwartz in August — two weeks after New Line’s biggest hit in years Hairspray.  New Line’s fall slate was dire with box office flops Shoot ‘Em Up, Mr. Woodcock, this pic and Martian Child a few weeks later.

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