The Express

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    [Total: 4 Average: 3]
  • Directed By: Gary Fleder
  • Written By: Charles Leavitt
  • Release Date: October 10, 2008
  • Domestic Distributor: Universal
  • Cast: Rob Brown, Dennis Quaid, Darrin Dewitt Henson

Box Office Info:
Budget: $38 million Financed by: Universal; Relativity
Domestic Box Office: $9,793,406 Overseas Box Office: $14,718

The budget for The Express was $38 million and it was financed by Universal and Relativity.   Universal handled distribution duties and first dated this family picture for October 10, 2008, then moved it forward to October 3 and then back to the 10th.  Nationwide sneak previews were held the week before release to help spread word of mouth, but attendance was light, which did not bode well for its commercial chances.  The American football theme would also be entirely dependent on the domestic market, since movies about the sport have minimal to zero appeal internationally.

Reviews were lukewarm and it bowed against Quarantine, Body Of Lies and City of Ember.  Tracking going into release was pointing to a low to mid teens opening, but The Express was dead on arrival with $4,562,675 — placing #6 for the weekend led by the holdover Beverly Hills Chihuahua.  Even with an excellent A cinemascore from audiences, The Express sank 52% to $2,191,210 the following weekend and was quickly pulled out of release with only $9,793,406.  Universal would see back about $5.3 million after theaters take their percentage of the gross, which would barely put a dent in the P&A spend and wouldn’t cover any of the budget.

The American college football subject attracted all of $14K overseas from the UK and it went straight to video or television in most markets.

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