A Different Kind of Blog

news and things sacred and irreverent put together by opinionated people.

Cruise Beaten by Vampires, Slumdogs

Posted by tothewire on February 2, 2009

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As a new weekend at the box office dawns, comes the news that Tom Cruise’s “Valkyrie” was vanquished in foreign countries last weekend by vampires and slumdogs.

In Germany, where “Valkyrie” should have had a strong pulse, the movie  was beaten in its debut by “Twilight.” To add insult to injury, “Twilight” was in its second week. So Germans still preferred to teen vampires to seeing Tom Cruise unsuccessfully attempt to kill Adolf Hitler. That’s not good.

In England, “Slumdog Millionaire” — in its fourth week — handily thrashed “Valkyrie’s” maiden voyage. So far, “Valkyrie” has taken in $12 million abroad including in South Korea — one of Cruise’s traditional strongholds — and in the Caribbean.

Here in the U.S., where the box office is a more solid calculation, “Valkyrie” will be ending its run soon with between $81 and $83 million all told. This is far from a flop, but the costs involved suggest that the misbegotten film will take a long time, if ever, to break even. “Valkyrie” cost between $90 and $100 million to make, and another $50 to $60 million to promote and market. Half of that $81 million has gone to exhibitors, which means only about $40 million has landed at MGM. Unless Cruise cut his fee or simply dropped it, some $15 to $20 million goes to him first.

Unless “Valkyrie” either really catches on like crazy in some other countries, or the DVD becomes a cult hit, the bottom line doesn’t look too promising. And that won’t bode well for the future of the Cruise-reignited United Artists at MGM.

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