Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
- Directed By: Glenn Ficarra, John Requa
- Written By: Robert Carlock
- Release Date: March 4, 2016
- Domestic Distributor: Paramount
- Cast: Tina Fey, Margot Robbie, Martin Freeman, Billy Bob Thornton
Box Office Info:
|Budget: $35 million||Financed by: Paramount|
|Domestic Gross: $23,083,334||Overseas Gross: $1,888,805|
The budget for Whiskey Tango Foxtrot was $35 million and Paramount financed this Tina Fey vehicle that was based on the memoir The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan by journalist Kim Barker. Political war comedies are a difficult sell and toothless trailers emphasizing light comedy, coupled with mixed reviews did not help the limited appeal. Despite the weak marketing material, Paramount did invest heavily into the pic’s promotion, with $13.79 million spent on TV spots going into release and a few million more after release — plus millions on print, online, radio, billboard, booking fees, etc.
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot was tracking for an opening between $10 – $12 million, trying to court older femme audiences as counter-programming to Zootopia and London Has Fallen. Paramount booked the film in 2,374 theaters and it came in below expectations with $7,450,275 — placing #4 for the weekend led by Zootopia. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot saw a modest 37.4% second weekend decline to $4,665,013 and a 39.9% third frame drop to $2,801,718 but lost most of its theater count after its third week. It closed its domestic run with $23,083,334 and Paramount would see back about $12.6 million after theaters take their percentage of the gross.
Viacom Chief Executive Philippe Dauman said the box office failure of Zoolander 2 and Whiskey Tango Foxtrot cost the studio $136 million in losses — and since both are only mid-budget movies, this should help make it quite clear just how much capital is being irresponsibly thrown into marketing campaigns.
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot saw a small theatrical rollout overseas, pulling in just $1.8 million with most of that anemic number coming from Australia’s $1.5 million gross. Paramount dumped it in the UK, where it cumed a mere $175,508.