Will “Sicko” be socko in Osaka?
Michael Moore and the Weinstein Co. are about to find out as they prep the foreign launch of the docu, starting with the Middle East and Australia in early August. Portugal, Italy and Japan will follow in late August.
As of July 12, TWC had sold off 18 markets including France, Germany, Russia, Sweden and South Africa.
Even though Moore’s a brand name in some international markets, the medical jury is still out whether foreign auds are eager to see an expose of U.S. health care.
The pic’s domestic tally of $13 million in its first three weeks is nice for a docu, but this isn’t just a docu. This is a Michael Moore Event, and the filmmaker has to compete with his past tallies — and his carefully cultivated media persona — with this one.
“Sicko” won’t come anywhere near the numbers “Fahrenheit 9/11” posted, but rivals say it has a shot at foreign B.O. in the $30 million range.
That’s based on international numbers for recent docs such as “March of the Penguins” ($50 million), “An Inconvenient Truth” ($25 million) and “Winged Migration” ($20 million).
“Fahrenheit’s” foreign cume was $100 million (led by $16 million in France); and “Bowling for Columbine” saw an overseas tally of $36 million (69% higher than the Stateside cume with Germany as the top market at $6.4 million).
TWC Intl. topper Glen Basner says the “Sicko” showing at Cannes in May laid the groundwork for luring international buyers. He’s looking to line up a U.K. deal by the end of July, possibly launching “Sicko” at a Brit film festival. He’s also hoping to lock sales to most of the other major international markets by then.
Pic will also be the opening-night film at the Melbourne Intl. Film Festival when that event begins on July 25.
Moore’s on board to go tubthumping overseas, starting this month with a trip to Denmark, followed by stops in London and Paris.