Faith-Based ‘Witnesses’ Debuts With Commanding $155K Weekend; ‘Bố Già’ Continues Specialty Box Office Dominance


With more theaters reopening and film-goers slowly returning, life is being resuscitated into the specialty box office. This week we see a faith-based movie premiere banking serious dinero.

Witnesses is a film recounting the early days of the Church of Latter-Day Saints and the translation of the Book of Mormon. The movie is directed and edited by Mark Goodman and distributed by Purdie Distribution. Daniel and Deborah Peterson of the Interpreter Foundation serve as executive producers.

President of Purdie Distribution Brandon Purdie said “Witnesses is the most significant and ambitious film dealing with the early history of the Church and the translation of the Book of Mormon to ever be released on the big screen.”

At the very least, their efforts will have been written on money. Witnesses opened on around 90 screen to a weekend gross of $155K. That’s a per screen average of $1722, a very solid showing given the last big faith-based movie to splash in the limited release space, The Girl Who Believes In Miracles (albeit during a different phase of the pandemic), averaged around $850 per screen in its debut.

Continuing its specialty box office dominance from last week, Bố Già (Dad, I’m Sorry) still brought out viewers in its second week. The Vietnamese-language comedy-drama banked $200K on 45 screens (up from just 19 for its debut), bringing its per screen average to $4,444. Though it’s a dramatic 50%+ drop from its premiere’s weekend gross, the 3388 Studio-distributed film is still performing respectably well for a small-market movie. If the Vietnamese blockbuster keeps this up, the film should easily cross the $1M mark in the coming weeks.

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