Tracks shows uphill path for Oz films in the US

29 September, 2014 by Don Groves

After platforming at four cinemas in New York and Los Angeles John Curran’s Tracks expanded to 28 screens in the US last weekend.

The 3-day gross was $US70,951 for a per-screen average of $2,534, bringing the 10-day cume to $103,098.

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That’s not a great result for the Weinstein Co., which originally intended to launch the Outback adventure starring Mia Wasikowska as “camel girl” Robyn Davidson in May.

Tracks underlines how tough it can be for Australian films to crack the mainstream US market, while deals for a limited theatrical release or straight to DVD and VOD are becoming more common.

John V. Soto’s The Reckoning is taking the latter path with a simultaneous VOD and DVD launch in the US and Canada on October 28 via Anchor Bay Entertainment.

“A theatrical release in North America would require a substantial P&A commitment that is better spent pushing the VOD release,” said Soto, who produced with Filmscope Entertainment’s Deidre Kitcher.

“Australian films have not fared well in the US over the last couple of years, so it makes complete sense to us.

"We've been advised (and I agree) that there is absolutely no point in releasing a film in the US unless you've got a major P&A commitment and a lot of screens (100+). Otherwise what can happen is the distributor will clock up a load of expenses (including office overheads and other expenses difficult to verify) that almost guarantee no share of VOD and DVD revenue when the film hits those platforms.”

As IF reported, Tony Mahony and Angus Sampson's dark comedy The Mule will be launched on digital platforms in Australia/New Zealand, the US and Canada on November 21.

Aaron Wilson’s WW2 drama Canopy is having a staggered cinema release, which kicked off with the August 29 premiere at the Lincoln Centre in New York followed by screenings at Laemmle’s Music Hall in Beverly Hills on September 10 and 12.

Producer Katrina Fleming said the film opened in three more cities last Friday with more to come in the first week of October.

Wilson will attend the film’s premiere at St Tropez de Antipodes festival in France next month and actor Khan Chittenden is attending a screening at the War on Screen festival in Champagne this week.

Geneviève Bailey’s I Am Eleven is being released in cinemas in key cities in the US by New York-based International Film Circuit. Concurrently the documentary is available on Gathr Films’ on-demand platform in 70 cities.

The film is in its third week in New York and has been extended for a fourth and it opened well in Los Angeles. “The San Francisco/ Bay Area opening weekend was excellent and will be expanded this weekend,” Bailey told IF.

"We are playing at AMC Metreon, the highest-grossing cinema in San Francisco, which screens 15 films a week and we came in at No 5 behind Guardians of the Galaxy. That's really excellent for an indie doc or anything indie at a commercial multiplex."

Deepsea Challenge had a platform release in US cinemas via DisruptiveLA.

Matt Saville’s Felony is due to debut in US cinemas on October 17. Among other titles acquired for the US are Kriv Stenders’ Kill Me Three Times, Josh Lawson’s The Little Death, Julius Avery's Son of a Gun, Zak Hilditch’s These Final Hours, Tim Winton’s The Turning, Jennifer Kent’s The Babadook, Sophie Hyde’s 52 Tuesdays, the Spierig brothers’ Predestination, Hugh Sullivan’s The Infinite Man and Sarah Spillane’s Around the Block.

 

 

 

AUSTRALIAN FILMS RELEASED IN THE US 2014

 

 

 

Title

 

Release Date

 

Total

1

I, Frankenstein  

January 24   

$19,075,290

 

2

The Railway Man

April 11

4,438,438

3

The Rover

June 13

1,114,423

4

Deepsea Challenge

August 8

   235,659

5

Tracks

September 19

   103,098

6

The Rocket

January 10

     56,823

 

7

I Am Eleven

September 12

     36,363*

8

John Doe: Vigilante

March 21

     20,168

 

9

Canopy

August 29

      7,368*

10

Patrick:  Evil Awakens

March 14

         NA

11

Wolf Creek 2

May 16

         NA

*incomplete figure                                         

Source:  Box Office Mojo

 

                  

                  

                  

 

 

 

 

 

 

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