By Dan Zak
August 27, 2012
One of the top 10 films at the weekend box office was a documentary that equates Barack Obama’s reelection with the death and dismemberment of the United States of America — “2016: Obama’s America” grossed about $6.5 million to land at No. 7, nearly $800,000 ahead of Meryl Streep’s latest, the Obamically titled “Hope Springs.”
This was the second-lowest-grossing weekend of the year, but the film’s $9.3 million seven-week haul is still enough to make it the most successful conservative political documentary of all time, as defined and ranked by Box Office Mojo. It’s also the sixth-highest-grossing all-around political documentary, ranking behind four Michael Moore films and “An Inconvenient Truth,” which starred Al Gore and glaciers.
“It’s like the sophomore on the varsity squad who comes out and plays better than the seniors but they still lose the game,” says Keith Simanton, managing editor of IMDb. “It’s still impressive.”
So, uh, where’d this movie come from?
Answer: From the mind of Dinesh D’Souza — president of King’s College in New York, former Reagan staffer, author of books and articles claiming that Obama espouses an anti-colonialist worldview that imperils America — and the wallets of 25 donors who kicked in a combined $2.5 million to bankroll the project, which was completed in June and premiered July 13 on one screen in Houston.
A month later it was playing in 10 theaters, then 61 the following week. It was on 169 screens the weekend of Aug. 17 to 19. On Friday it hit 1,091 and was the No. 4 film nationwide that day. (The No. 1 movie in America this weekend also happened to be GOP-tastic. “The Expendables 2” stars former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Chuck Norris, who endorsed Newt Gingrich earlier this year.)
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