Reliable sources like Filmjerk and BOM indicate that The Horsemen (or, if you're going by the poster, Horsemen) is opening today in 75 markets. Or 75 screens, I'm not sure on that. But I can't seem to track it down on Moviefone, and selling movie tickets is, like, their big thing! They WANT me to find a ticket! Ive spoken to a few pals, and it doesn't look like the film is playing anywhere near Philly, New York, Austin, Orlando, or Chicago. I can only assume it's playing all around Hollywood, right?
Now, it feels really strange for me to be defending a film directed by Jonas Akerlund, since I consider his FIRST film (Spun) to be a rat turd of the highest odor. But what's the deal with Lionsgate already? I certainly don't want to slap the hand that gave me a lot of great horror flicks over the past five years, but between their virtual burials of The Midnight Meat Train (102 theaters, $83,000 gross), Repo! The Genetic Opera (11 theaters(?), $146,000), The Horsemen, and The Burrowers (straight to DVD, and a damn fine movie), I'm starting to take this an affront to the fine horror geeks of the world. LG sure didn't mind scooping $51 million out of My Bloody Valentine a few months back, and they've got Saw 6 in the oven as we speak, so clearly they're not averse to ALL horror movies ... just the smaller ones. Nice.
And JUST NOW, one of my critic pals said that when he asked his Lionsgate rep about the film, she told him it was opening NEXT week (3/13). But nobody from Lionsgate let anyone know, and ALL the movie sites in the universe have 3/6 as the "limited" release date. So maybe they were just trying to get out of the Watchmen's way (although in 75 theaters, it hardly matters, except maybe you'd get a little "sold out spillover"), or maybe this is just another trick to bury an unwanted movie. (Lest we forget how Midnight Meat Train was remanded to dollar theaters only.)
They also could have made some half-decent money on Dance of the Dead if they'd bothered to try.