Yes, you read it right, it’s not just Sir Ian McKellen and a football club currently punching above its weight in the Premier League that the Lancashire town is famous for, because you can now add a rather dubious honour to that list. Shia LaBeouf’s latest vehicle, war thriller Man Down, premiered in just one UK theatre – Reel Cinema, Burnley – with a single ticket making up the sum total of the box office revenue.
This means that the movie has now grossed a whopping £7 in Britain, which in today’s market equates to a whole $8.70 – gulp.
It is thought that the main reason for this catastrophic performance is that the film was released simultaneously on demand and digitally. However, the fact that it is going to DVD and Blu-ray as early as next month could provide a big clue. There’s no such thing as bad publicity, but you do wonder if Man Down may as well have gone the whole hog and taken absolutely nothing; after all, there’d be no doubting its immortality then.
As Paul Dergarabadien, senior media analyst at ComScore, put it: “Poor Shia. That opening could be in the Guinness World Records or something.” Well, it would be if Polish flick My Nikifor hadn’t achieved the exact same feat back in 2004. No ticket sales whatsoever suddenly sounds more and more appealing.
But believe it or not, Shia’s in very good company because films starring the likes of Uma Thurman, Emma Watson, Keanu Reeves, Halle Berry (which is quite believable) and even Morgan Freeman have all dipped below the £100 mark. Man Down also stars Gary Oldman, no less, so it can’t be a dead loss. Don’t forget the Burnley connection, either.
Dergarabadien also mentioned that “there could be a silver lining to those seven pounds”, but if you can think of one then answers on a postcard please, or preferably in the comments section below.