During last weekend’s Golden Globe awards a guy sitting near me opined that Quentin Tarantino‘s The Hateful Eight was more or less a box-office disaster. I knew it was underperforming (it dropped over 50% last weekend after the wide break on January 1st) but the word “disaster” startled me. I’m not much of a fan of Tarantino’s western talkathon, and certainly not of the ultra-violent final third, but I feel badly for the Weinstein Co., which is under some financial strain.
I’m no box-office analyst but would it be a stretch to call The Hateful Eight more of a disappointment than a wipe-out? As of last night it was at $44 million and change. It’s on the way down so it’ll finish with…what? $55 million or a touch more? Worldwide earnings will probably surpass…what, $110 or $115 million? Boxoffice.com’s Shawn Robbins: “My initial assessment is that it’s not a disaster at this stage…it still has several overseas territories to open, and it’s difficult to project what it will do there, but the U.K.’s opening wasn’t far off from Django‘s (which may or may not be a good sign for other countries).”
The 70mm thing seems to have definitely been a costly indulgence that didn’t pay off, especially as the 70mm marketing indicated to Average Joes that regular digital projection might be a lesser thing. (The truth is that Robert Richardson‘s Oscar-nominated cinematography didn’t scream 70mm; I’m presuming that a digitally projected version in a good theatre will look nearly identical.) Grindhouse/Deathproof is still Tarantino’s lowest grosser this century. Jackie Brown, his third best film after Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs, grossed $39.8 million domestically and $74.7 million worldwide.