Promised Land

Budget: $15 million Financed by: Participant Media; Focus; Image Nation Abu Dhabi
Domestic Gross: $7,597,898 Domestic Distributor: Focus
Overseas Gross: $3,442,000
Directed by: Gus Van Sant
Matt Damon
John Krasinski
Produced by: Jeff Skoll

promised land box officeParticipant Media co-financed this Matt Damon vehicle for $15 million with capital from a fund they formed with Image Nation Abu Dhabi.  Focus owned worldwide rights and distributed in the US.  Following Participant Media’s model of financing social issue films, the marketing for Promised Land was never able to shed its ‘issue film’ limitations and the pic did mediocre business in limited release grossing $173,915 in 25 theaters with a soft $6,957 per screen average.  Focus expanded Promised Land the following weekend to 1,676 theaters during a crowded end of the year Oscar hopeful marketplace and it pulled in a poor $4,049,911.  Mediocre to poor reviews didn’t help the limited commercial appeal and Promised Land collapsed a huge 68.5% the following weekend to $1,274,909 and was promptly pulled from all but 134 theaters.  It ended its brief run after just 4 weeks in release (two weeks in wide release) with $7,597,898.  The head of Focus Features James Schamus would be replaced the following year by parent Universal, citing disappointing returns of Promised Land and Taking Woodstock as some of the reasons to rebrand Focus as a more commercial enterprise.  Overseas, Damon’s star power did little to appeal to audiences and the film managed only $3.4 million across numerous distributors that Focus sold the pic off to, pulling in terrible numbers in every market.