Shia LeBeouf’s new movie, Man Down , has made history with its weekend release in the UK. Showing in just a single theater, the $3.5 million screen adaptation of a book nobody cares about and never read earned just £7, or roughly $9 in its opening weekend.
Given that £7 is the average matinee price of a single movie ticket in Britain, it would seem that Mr. LeBeouf’s project managed to attract exactly one fan, who bought the ticket at a discount and seems to have skipped the popcorn. Efforts to locate this person and ask him how he liked the movie have so far come to nothing, though he probably lives within a few miles of the one venue in England that’s showing the picture: the Reel Cinema in the small market town of Burnley, Lancashire.
Man Down tells the story of a tough, gritty Marine with PTSD who leaves war behind and comes home to discover that the America he fought for has been devastated by something-something, loud explosion, meaningful dialog, love interest, surprise ending, credits.
To Mr. LeBeouf’s credit and in a stunning indictment of the moviegoing public in America, the film’s domestic release did a bit better. From its December 2nd release, Man Down has grossed nearly half a million dollars in total, which is about $3 million less than the movie cost and only double Shia’s annual legal costs as he continues to physically assault Trump supporters at his signature He Will Not Divide Us art installation.
How long Man Down will continue to be shown in its UK venue is not known or whether the booking agent who agreed to pay for the license will be sacked for the decision, but unconfirmed reports have it that an additional two tickets have been sold in the week following the release, bringing the UK box office total to £21. These additional sales have sparked rumors of a sequel, potentially starring Jayden Smith and consisting of 90 minutes’ worth of blank screen and soft white noise.