The experts didn’t see this coming. Each Friday, the folks over at Collider Movie Talk predict which films will place in the top five at the box office over the weekend. The Christian film War Room didn’t make anyone’s list last week, yet came in number two once the cash was counted.
Collider Video senior producer John Campea ate some crow:
You think we would learn by now. None of us predicted War Room in our top five. I don’t think any of us were even aware that the film was opening. Don’t underestimate the potential of niche films that have a dedicated market that they’re targeting their niche films at. We’ve seen faith-based films in the past have modest success. I guess we should stop being surprised at that.
Campea understates the point. Recall that Mel Gibson’s The Passion of the Christ opened at number one, pulling in $83 million on its opening weekend. Films like God’s Not Dead and Fireproof have turned in respectable earnings, demonstrating that a market persists for Christian films.
That’s the other thing. These aren’t “faith-based” films. They’re Christian films. That’s the phenomenon. For whatever reason, critics seem loathe to note that.