- Directed By: David Gordon Green
- Written By: John Pollono, Jeff Bauman, Bret Witter
- Release Date: September 22, 2017
- Domestic Distributor: Roadside Attractions/Lionsgate
- Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal, Tatiana Maslany, Miranda Richardson
Box Office Info:
|Budget: $30 million||Financed by: Bold Films|
|Domestic Gross: $4,211,129||Overseas Gross: $4,226,689|
Stronger was first in active development at Lionsgate and Jeff Bauman’s memoir was one of three competing Boston Marathon bombing projects that were trying to get to the big screen. Lionsgate inexplicably also had Patriots Day moving forward and FOX had Boston Strong. When it looked like Patriots Day would make it into production first, Boston Strong did not move out of development and Lionsgate eventually pulled out of financing duties for Stronger. To keep the project from collapsing, Jake Gyllenhaal took the movie over to Bold Films. Back in 2015, Gyllenhaal landed a first-look deal over at Bold, following their successful release of Nightcrawler. The budget for Stronger was $30 million and Bold Films fully financed and according to Bold Films CEO Gary Michael Walters, this would be their first “expansion into bigger-budgeted films.” Lionsgate would also remain attached as co-distributor with their sister company Roadside Attractions. After the dismal box office gross, Bold Films laid off half of their 14 staff members.
Stronger entered production just one week after the cameras began rolling on Patriots Day. Lionsgate decided to release Patriots Day first as a possible 2016 awards contender and pushed Stronger to a TBD date in 2017. Patriots Day received decent enough reviews, but bombed at the box office and was shut out of the awards circuit. In late March 2017, Lionsgate dated Stronger for a limited release on September 22 with the intention of platforming the theater expansion to help spread word of mouth. The movie first premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival where it was met with positive reviews and that followed with numerous special screenings in different locations to spread word of mouth. Jake Gyllenhaal also gave the movie tons of exposure through an active PR tour and numerous appearances on day and nighttime shows. Lionsgate/Roadside invested a small amount into TV ads, which iSpotTV estimates as just $3.33 million. Millions more would be spent on print, radio, online, distribution logics and other traditional means of P&A.
Stronger was booked into 573 theaters and pulled in a disappointing $1,611,040 with a troublesome $2,812 per screen average for the weekend. It cracked the top 10 at #8 for the frame led by new opener Kingsman: The Golden Circle. The theater count was expanded to 645 for its second session with diminishing returns at just $922,923 — declining 42.7%. The poor second weekend numbers killed off a further expansion and it lost 310 locations going into its third frame. Those numbers were just $277,809 for the weekend. The domestic run closed with just $4,211,129. As with Patriots Day, topical films like this are a tough sell and many have a built in resistance factor from audiences.
Stronger predictably had little traction outside of the domestic market and cumed a mere $4.2M.