Noah proved mighty at the box office over the weekend, drawing roughly $44 million in domestic ticket sales and $95 million overseas.
The suits at Paramount Pictures are clearly relieved to hear those figures.
Yet consider how those numbers could have been different had all the negative publicity surrounding the film’s environment themes and fidelity to the source material hadn’t materialized in the weeks leading up to its release.
One doesn’t have to look far to see what could have been. Just recall the box office reception another Biblical film received roughly a decade ago.
Director Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ rallied faith-base consumers to the tune of $83 million in its opening weekend. Those massive figures would soon be dwarfed by the film’s overall haul–$370 million in domestic ticket sales.
That was in 2004 dollars, plus the movie wasn’t rolled out on the number of screens afford to Noah (which had 500 more screens).
Faith Driven Consumer, the group behind the IStandWithPhil.com campaign to save Duck Dynasty, contends Paramount left millions on the table with its approach to the Noah tale.
“What kind of records could ‘Noah’ have shattered if the film’s tone and story had resonated with faith-based audiences as they did with ‘The Passion?’ Paramount will never know,” said Chris Stone, a Certified Brand Strategist and Founder of Faith Driven Consumer, in a statement.
The news may sour for Noah considering it received a withering “C” rating from CinemaScore. That could directly impact its second-week grosses.