Playing For Keeps

Budget: $35 million Financed by: Nu Image/Millennium
Domestic Gross: $13,102,272 Domestic Distributor: FilmDistrict
Overseas Gross: $17,859,063
Directed by: Gabriele Muccino
Gerard Butler
Produced by: Kevin Misher

playing for keeps box officeGerard Butler’s third consecutive flop after Machine Gun Preacher and Chasing Mavericks — which bombed miserably at the box office a month earlier.  Variety interviewed director Gabriele Muccino who regretted the experience making Playing For Keeps and talking about his earlier Hollywood work with Will Smith to directing this generic rom com, “I started out on the top of Mount Everest, and then I fell flat on my face.”  He also blamed the film’s commercial failure on bad marketing by FilmDistrict.  Nu Image/Millennium financed the $35 million romantic comedy and FilmDistrict purchased domestic rights with an estimated $20 million marketing spend.  Playing For Keeps opened in the US in 2,837 theaters to a poor $5,750,288, placing #6 for the slow December 7th weekend, which was led by Skyfall in its 5th week of release.  Playing For Keeps declined 45.3% to $3,146,443 in its second frame and sank 86.5% in its third weekend to $424,105.  The film ended its run with just $13,102,272 and FilmDistrict would see back about $7.2 million after theaters take their percentage of the gross, leaving most of their marketing and acquisition costs at a loss.  Overseas, the film pulled in only $17.8 million across numerous distributors, making a respectable $6 million in Muccino’s home country Italy and playing poorly just about everywhere else.