Steve Jobs, the new film from writer Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network) and director Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) disappointed at the box office during its wide release opening weekend.
Things were looking good for the film’s potential for profitability when its release was limited to a small number of screens, but it appears that the wider audience just doesn’t care that much, and it looks like it’s going to be a flop.
The film cost $30 million to make. When it played in only a handful of theaters, it reportedly took in $2.5 million, which was really good on a per screen basis. Unfortunately, when it opened up to nearly 2,500 theaters, it only took in $7.3 million.
There are likely a variety of factors that came into play, and it would be disingenuous to discount the fact that audiences have already seen a Steve Jobs movie released in recent years. Jobs, which starred Ashton Kutcher and Josh Gad was released in 2013, and has been on Netflix for some time.
Brent Lang, senior film and media reporter at Hollywood industry publication Variety asks what went wrong and opines:
Looking back, it’s difficult to see how “Steve Jobs” could overcome the commercial headwinds it faced. Because of its Silicon Valley subject matter and screenwriter Aaron Sorkin’s involvement, the film has been compared to the Facebook drama “The Social Network.” That film managed to turn critical raves for Sorkin’s cutting dialogue into big box office and a $22.4 million opening. But the comparisons are faulty. “The Social Network” benefited from arriving just as Facebook was becoming ubiquitous. In 2010, it opened as everyone was discovering the thrill of over-sharing vacation pictures and political screeds. Even as it hit the zeitgeist, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg remained largely unknown to the general public. The story of the social media platform’s litigious origins had the shock of new.
In contrast, Jobs, his genius for design and demanding personality, have all been thoroughly picked over. There’s the Walter Isaacson biography that formed the basis for the Sorkin picture, the Kutcher biopic, and endless profiles and think pieces. Steve Jobs is many things, but he is not an unknown commodity.
Steve Jobs took 7th place in the weekend box office behind: The Martian (in its 4th week), Goosebumps (in its 2nd week), Bridge of Spies (in its second week), The Last Witch Hunter (in its first week), Hotel Transylvania 2 (in its fifth week), and Paranormal Activity (in its first week).
The movie did manage to beat out Guillermo del Toro’s Crimson Peak in its second week. Technically Steve Jobs was in its third week following its first two weeks of limited release.
According to Box Office Mojo, the film has so far grossed less than $10 million.
Image via YouTube