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by Peter Knegt
June 13, 2014 8:52 AM
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Indie Box Office Preview: Will Robert Pattinson Finally Get An Indie Hit With 'The Rover'?

Guy Pearce and Robert Pattinson in "The Rover."

Outside of the "Twilight" films, Robert Pattinson has been getting some consistent and impressive work from independent filmmakers, from David Cronenberg to Werner Herzog. Yet he's so far been unable to be a box office draw in that context, with his last two indies -- "Cosmopolis" and "Bel  Ami" -- failing to even gross $1 million. Will David Michod's well-reviewed "The Rover" change that this weekend? Here's our prediction for that and four other openers:

READ MORE: Robert Pattinson on Singing Keri Hilson in 'The Rover' and How He Chooses His Projects Post-'Twilight'

  • A Coffee In Berlin (Music Box Films)
    Director:  Jan Ole Gerster
    Cast: Tom Schilling, Katharina Schüttler, Justus von Dohnányi, Andreas Schröders
    Criticwire Average: 7 critics gave it a B average
    Where It's Screening: At the Sunshine in New York. It opens in Philadelphia, Chicago and the Bay Area next weekend.
    Box Office Expectation: This German import about a young man who drops out of university and ends up wandering the streets of Berlin comes to America via Music Box Films, a company that has been having a lot of success with foreign films lately (see "Ida"). Its single screen debut should help it have a reasonable debut -- perhaps around $8,000 --  though it's what happens in the following weekends that's really going to matter.
  • Hellion (Sundance Selects)
    Director: Kat Candler
    Cast: Cast: Aaron Paul, Juliette Lewis, Josh Wiggins, Augustine Frizzell, Deke Garner, Jonny Mars
    Criticwire Average: 11 critics gave it a B+ average
    Where It's Screening: At the IFC Center in New York, day and date with VOD.
    Box Office Expectation: Coming out of Sundance, Kat Candler's "Hellion" follows a 13-year-old placed under the care of his aunt. Good reviews and the name recognition of Aaron Paul and Juliette Lewis should help it, though likely more on VOD (where its opening day and date) than theatrically, where "Hellion" should expect to gross around $7,000 from its sole theater.
  • Ivory Tower (Samuel Goldwyn & Participant)
    Director: Andrew Rossi
    Criticwire Average: 4 critics gave it a B+ average
    Where It's Screening: Two theaters in New York and Los Angeles (the Angelika and the Landmark) before further expansion in the next few weekends.
    Box Office Expectation: Another Sundance alum, Andrew Rossi's doc "Ivory Tower" takes on student debt and the fact that the cost of college has risen 1,120% since 1978. Rossi's last doc -- "Page One: Inside The New York Times" -- managed a strong $1 million gross, and "Ivory" clearly has its sights on the same. A social action campaign associated with the film will be a plus and the film will be in good shape if it finds an average north of $10,000 this weekend.
  • The Rover (A24)
    Director: David Michod
    Cast: Guy Pearce, Robert Pattinson, Scoot McNairy, David Field
    Criticwire Average: 8 critics gave it a B average
    Where It's Screening: New York and LA in five theaters total before going nationwide next weekend.
    Box Office Expectation: A24 is on a roll with last weekend's strong debut of "Obvious Child" (we'll be keeping an eye on that film's second weekend numbers as well) and hopes to keep it coming with what is arguably the most anticipated specialty release of the weekend, David Michod's follow-up to "Animal Kingdom," "The Rover." Coming off a Cannes debut last month, the film stars Guy Pearce and Robert Pattinson and takes place in a lawless Australian outback 10 years after a global economic collapse. It's not the easiest sell, but reviews, Michod's following from "Kingdom," and of course, Robert Pattinson, should bring "The Rover" to an average north of $17,000.
  • Violette (Adopt Films)
    Director: Martin Provost
    Cast:: Emmanuelle Devos, Sandrine Kiberlain, Olivier Gourmet
    Criticwire Average: 1 critics gave it a B+
    Where It's Screening: An exclusive engagement at New York's Lincoln Plaza, with more New York area locations next weekend.
    Box Office Expectation: Adopt Films bought French drama "Violette" out of Toronto last year, and hopes New York's Upper West Side will come out this weekend to watch it. Set in early 1900s France, the film follows the true story of Violette Leduc and her relationship with feminist writer Simone de Beavoir. It definitely offers a high-brow appeal to a certain audience, one that could definitely be found near the Lincoln Plaza, so "Violette" should expect a gross over $8,000 for weekend one. After that, it will get a lot more difficult.

Peter Knegt is a regular contributor to Indiewire and our box office columnist. Follow him
on Twitter.


  • annoyed | June 25, 2014 3:22 PMReply

    why arent you saying the worldwide total? why are you discrediting him,or do you give kristens flops the same attention? two of her films were released twice, one also was in the UK summer festival pre ordered tickets which were quite expensive but still made no profit
    the rover made $7o,ooo in 5 theatres the same as cosmo and reported as opening strong, don't understand why A24 jumped from 5 to 500 theatres, Bel Ami and cosmo were put on iTunes before they were even released in all areas which must have affected the BO there are months before release between countries so if they can view it on itune instead of waiting they do
    box office mojo then other sites posted it had flopped early on sunday the second weekend before they could possibly know the total very obsessive to promote negative press
    a bit unfair not explaining the film or saying that he had overall very good reviews
    it would be nice if indiewire scoreof B was included on RT

  • susan santos | June 16, 2014 12:29 PMReply

    i do hope so much and would really pray for rover BO to raise so that you and other rob fans will lay off kristen

  • Kent | June 17, 2014 5:46 PM

    When her lame fans stop haunting the comment sections with lies and BS, then no one will feel the need to respond to them. And it has nothing to do with box office. Pattinson already has a successful career, by every measure.

    Gossip Cop called out Stewart's so-called fans this week for slandering them on twitter and other sites. They have the worst reputation in the world as bullies and liars. You do her no favors by trying to trash Pattinson. He wants nothing to do with her and has made that plain as day. It will be nice when her fans get over their obsession with him.

  • Jonah | June 15, 2014 2:54 PMReply

    Why do you only site domestic numbers? It seems a bit disingenuous, since the majority of the box office is international, especially for indie art films.
    BOM has the correct numbers for Cosmopolis:
    Total Lifetime Grosses: Domestic: $763,556 12.6%
    + Foreign: $5,300,000 87.4%
    = Worldwide: $6,063,556

    The numbers are similar for Bel Ami, and what this shows is that Pattinson has a worldwide following, he's not just popular in the US. Some actors can't even get international distribution for their indies. He doesn't have that problem. The Rover is fresh on RT and seems to be off to a very good start this weekend.

  • @MI | June 14, 2014 5:34 PMReply

    How pathetic us your life that you come here and post about Pattinson when you clearly dislike him? Yet, you're the first to post AND you know so much about him... Hmmm, I think we have a Stewart fan here. Please, please, if you dislike him so much, get a life and stop posting your hate on every single article about him.

  • MI | June 14, 2014 8:30 AMReply

    You call 67% (47% among top critics) on rotten tomatoes well reviewed? The answer to your question is no. It won't cross $1 million either. RPatz is box office poison. He couldn't even sell Remember Me and Water for Elephants.

  • annoyed | June 25, 2014 2:44 PM

    doesn't have a high RT% but it has 80 critics voting it fresh twice as many as don't like it . most critics who don't like it praised Robs performance ,especially as it was a challenging role and he nailed it, most that didn't obviously don't like him, with childish comments you can cover him in dirt hes still a pretty boy. lot of fresh reviews have not been included on RT. two reviews from indiewire one rotten C was posted the one that would be fresh wasn't. seems very personal and not very professional, kristens cosm has ahigher % but only 9 reviews,not changed in a month. easy to manipulate facts.
    RM made $40m profit, ha a lot of critism because ofthe ending a lot of reporters backtracked the following year saying it was misunderstood , his actingwas good.WFE made 80m profit until a UK paper told people to bycot it because of possible abuse to the elephant they hadthevideo years previously, but the press were aware and weren't concerned until WFE was No. 2 at the BO , both Be Ami and cosmo were on iTunes before full release to cinema.

  • Kent | June 15, 2014 2:48 PM

    Lying about Pattinson will never gain Kristen Stewart any fans. Her fans have the worst reputation in the world, and deservedly so.

    Both WFE and Remember Me showed profits. They made money. No one lost any money on either of those films. Pattinson has already proved he can draw an audience outside of the Twilight franchise. You know who's indies have all flopped? Kristen Stewart, that's who.

    In fact, Bel Ami, which wasn't a hit, made over $8 million. You can add the grosses for 3 of KStew's films, WTTR, TR and TYH, and they still wouldn't add up to $6 million. There are flops and then there are massive flops. Her indies are massive flops. They don't even make back the catering budget. Actresses who turn themselves in to tabloid fodder by conducting an affair with their married directors in public are box office poison.