|Budget: $60 million||Financed by: Nu Image/Millennium; Emmett/Furla|
|Domestic Gross: $40,081,410||Domestic Distributor: Overture|
|Overseas Gross: $38,379,289|
Directed by: Jon Avnet
Produced by: Randall Emmett
“There’s no doubt that when anyone looks back at the history of either of these actors, this movie will be one of the defining moments of their careers. Let’s hope it’s defined in a positive way.” –Avi Lerner (pre-selling the project at Cannes)
Righteous Kill was co-financed for $60 million by Nu Image/Millennium and Emmett/Furla and this would be the second Jon Avnet directed turkey of 2008, the other being the long delayed 88 Minutes, also financed by the same team and staring Al Pacino. Put into production and marketed as two acting legends together for the first time (not counting their two brief scenes in Heat), the novelty did not rub off on audiences, who have been seeing the two thesps appear in paycheck roles for over a decade. Newly formed and short lived US distributor Overture, which is owned by cable giant Starz, paid an estimated $12 million to acquire the rights. Righteous Kill received awful reviews (though not nearly as awful as 88 Minutes) and the film managed to open to a decent enough $16,288,361 — placing #3 for the weekend led by new openers Burn After Reading and Tyler Perry’s The Family That Preys. The film didn’t have strong legs and it fell 54.4% to $7,424,479 in its second frame and closed out its run with $40,081,410. After theaters take their cut of the gross, Overture’s P&A spend would almost be covered. Domestic home video sales were $17.8 million (less after resellers take their cut and manufacturing costs), so Overture probably broke even on their investment, before Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino sued them. Overture made an agreement with watch maker Tutima to use images and names of the actors for a product tie in, without the consent of the actors. DeNiro and Pacino sued Overture and Tutima and the case settled confidentially in Dec 2009. Nu Image and Emmett/Furla pre-sold the film which sold well to distributors, so their exposure to the budget was minimal, but Righteous Kill pulled in poor numbers overseas to distributors who overpaid for the film. The film pulled in just $38.3 million across numerous distributors.