‘Blind Side’ first female-led film to cross $200 mil
Sandra Bullock rang in the New Year making box office history. Sometime over the weekend, Bullock starrer “The Blind Side” became the first in history driven solely by a top female star to jump the $200 million mark at the domestic B.O.
To be precise, the film finished the frame with a cume of $208.5 million, in its seventh week in release. Over the weekend, it rose a remarkable 10% over the previous week, and it’s still got plenty of life left, according to Warner Bros. prexy of domestic distribution Dan Fellman.
“Blind Side” was fully financed and produced by AlconEntertainment. Project was brought in by Molly Smith, daughter of Alcon backer Fred Smith, founder of FedEx.
Among the likes of Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep, Angelina Jolie, Reese Witherspoon and Bullock, it’s hard to believe that none of the films in which they had solo top billing hadn’t reached $200 million.
But indeed, none had, according to Fellman and other box office observers.
Roberts’ “Erin Brockovich” — the film most often compared to “Blind Side” — grossed $125.6 million domestically. Streep’s “The Devil Wears Prada” grossed $124.7 million at the domestic B.O.
The only femme-driven films that jumped $200 million domestically were romantic comedy “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” the 2002 indie hit starring then-unknown Nia Vardalos, and romancer “Ghost.” “Greek Wedding” earned $241.1 million domestically; “Ghost,” grossed $217 million.
Bullock’s accomplishment is part of a gender revolution at the domestic box office. Until recent hits like the “Twilight” pics and “Sex and the City,” Hollywood studios thought only fanboys could generate big grosses, not femmes.
(At the same time, it’s not lost on distribs that the top grossing film of all time, James Cameron’s “Titanic,” was probably fueled by women who saw the film numerous times.)
Some femme-driven films have found more love overseas. Musical “Mamma Mia!,” with a cast led by Streep, grossed $144.1 million domestically and a massive $465.7 million overseas. (Pic is Streep’s top grossing film at the domestic B.O.).
Romantic comedies have long been a studio staple domestically, but even the more successful ones usually generate grosses in the $100 million to $130 million range.
Roberts’ “Pretty Women” scored a bit higher, with an estimated $178.4 million domestically.
Bullock had an exceptionally successful year — other than the little-seen “All About Steve” — with another box office hit in “The Proposal.” Bullock starred opposite Ryan Reynolds in the romantic comedy, which grossed $164 million domestically.
“And we’re not even done. I think ‘Blind Side’ has another $30 million left,” Fellman said.
Bullock’s films have grossed north of $1.72 billion domestically. That compares to $2.31 billion for Roberts; $1.54 billion for Streep; and $1.44 billion for Jolie.