Serena

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  • Directed By: Susanne Bier
  • Written By: Christopher Kyle, Ron Rash
  • Release Date: March 27, 2015
  • Domestic Distributor: Magnolia
  • Cast: Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence, Rhys Ifans

Box Office Info:
Budget: $30 millionFinanced by: 2929 Entertainment; StudioCanal
Domestic Gross: $176,391Overseas Gross: $4,899,231


The budget for Serena was $30 million and it was co-financed by 2929 Entertainment and StudioCanal.  Filming was completed back in 2012 and in the subsequent years, found its two leads as bankable A listers.  StudioCanal pre-sold the film and sold out almost every major market, which would limit their exposure to the budget.  Two years after filming was completed and a reportedly very long and problematic 18 month editing process, the film premiered at the 2014 London Film Festival to little buzz — even with the star wattage of Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper.  Reviews were awful and Serena did not land a US distributor.

StudioCanal distributed in the UK in October 2014 and opened the film in 185 theaters to a dismal $153,030 with a $827 per screen average and it closed with just $320,907.  StudioCanal also distributed in Australia to a disastrous $54,820 opening weekend with a $375 per screen average and it quickly closed with $306,438.  The overseas cume was a mere $4.8 million across multiple distributors.

After all of the major studios passed on the film, different edits of the picture were commissioned for buyer screenings.  The few offers that distributors presented were apparently so small that Magnolia, which is owned by Mark Cuban who owns 2929 Entertainment, decided to distribute themselves.  Magnolia basically cut their losses and did not do much in the way of advertising and released the film on VOD and the internet a month before its belated March 27, 2015 limited US theatrical run.  The VOD gross was about $1 million.

Serena finally opened in 59 theaters to a terrible $100,090 with a $1,696 per screen average.  Serena lost 27 theaters going into its second weekend and declined a huge 76.2% to $23,802 and closed its brief theatrical run with $176,391.  Bradley Cooper, who was just coming off his massive hit American Sniper, saw Aloha and Burnt flop at the box office a few months after Serena.

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