Miramax, which earlier this year said it would re-release “Confessions of a Dangerous Minds” in August, now plans to return Oscar best pic “Chicago” to theaters in July.
In both cases, theatrical re-releases will serve to hype a release of the pic in homevid the next month.
The “Chicago” run will feature a new version of the movie that includes an additional song-and-dance number cut from the original theatrical release. Homevid version of the awards-laden musical, which hits retail shelves Aug. 19, also will feature the additional scene.
Miramax refused to confirm any of the re-release plans. But a well-placed source said distrib was close to locking in on a July 18 slotting for the re-release.
No details were available on playdate plans, but it’s likely the run will include a limited number of venues. Anything more than 600 theaters would rep a wide release but that could prove too ambitious even for a winner like “Chicago” in the busy summer season.
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“Confessions,” which did less than $16 million in its first domestic run, is hoping to line up at least 1,000 playdates for its Aug. 1 return (Daily Variety, April 4), though it’s unclear how many showtimes will be offered in individual venues. Also, the gambit hinges on a premise that pic never found its true audience the first time around, something no one would claim about “Chicago.”
Distrib claims George Clooney-helmed Sam Rockwell laffer could have done better had “Confessions” not been released amid a busy box office market last January. But its new date has quirky Chuck Barris biopic going up against wide openers including Universal’s presumed B.O. behemoth “American Wedding.”
Still, the Miramax re-releases aren’t wholly unprecedented.
Distrib re-released “Spy Kids,” a $100 million grosser, the same summer following its original March bow and boosted overall cume to $112 million. In 1997, Miramax went after spring-break teens by re-expanding December sleeper “Scream” into wide release and boosting pic’s cume to $103 million from $87 million.
And Disney’s “The Lion King,” originally unspooled in June 1994 to a boffo $267 million reception, was again embraced by auds after a November re-release the same year that bolstered family toon’s total domestic B.O. to $312 million.
“Chicago” has rung up $168.6 million domestically and about $470 million in worldwide B.O. There are no plans to re-release pic in international territories where it’s already unspooled, but “Chicago” is still hoofing it in later-bowing markets including Japan.