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Moore's 'Capitalism' off to profitable start


Wednesdays in September are usually slow at the box office, but nothing could keep away Michael Moore's fan base in Los Angeles and New York City.

"Capitalism: A Love Story" sold about $36,000 worth of tickets at two theaters each in L.A. and two in New York, according to distributor Overture Films.

It's certainly not the biggest opening ever for the provocative left-wing filmmaker. "Fahrenheit 9/11," which still holds the record as the highest-grossing documentary in the U.S. and Canada, collected $83,922 from just two locations when it opened on a Wednesday in June 2004.

Nonetheless, $9,000 per theater on one day is very strong, particularly in the slow moviegoing month of September. That amount is typically considered healthy for a new film in limited release to gross over a three-day weekend, not a single weekday. "Bright Star" did just a little more than that last weekend, for instance, and was considered a modest success by distributor Apparition.

"Capitalism" now appears to be set up for a strong opening weekend as Moore's core fans will likely continue to turn out in New York and L.A. through Sunday. It's still an open question, however, whether the movie's controversial subject matter will attract a larger audience when Overture opens it around the country on Oct. 2.

-- Ben Fritz

Update (4:22 PM): A previous version of this post inaccurately stated that "Fahrenheit 9/11" opened in 2007.

Photo: Michael Moore in "Capitalism: A Love Story." Credit: Amy Sussman / Getty Images for Overture Films

Comments () | Archives (23)

I find it hilarious that he hates Capitalism (and this country obviously)so much yet is profitting from all the morons who go and watch this crap. A little hypocritical, don't you think?

The fact that Moore benefits from the capitalistic system He decries is SO ironic. Every system has flaws, but the free enterprise system in our country has made this country the best in the world when fair competition is allowed to thrive. Moore should go to a country with communism as its basisand see if he would be happier.

Classic. The hypocrite makes a fortune criticizing the very system that makes him rich.

Michael Moore is a big part of what is wrong with the world. Manipulating people's opinions through half-truths and innuendo.

Ironic... He is against capitalists, however, he made a movie to make a profit for himself and his investors. :)

More, what a pig

Since Moore considers capitalism to be unethical why is he charging for the film? Are 100% of the proceeds being donated? Of course not. He is not only a bad film maker, he so distorts and misrepresent the truth you would have to describe him as a liar; and now a hypocrite. I am sorry, but he lost me at that horribly inaccurate Roger & Me. Snopes.com and Factcheck.org would probably run out of diskspace trying to document all of the factual problems with his movies. I do not understand why anyone would pay money to see his fact devoid hate mongering.

I hope this film exposes the things that went wrong during the Bush years and Bush's extremist/radical policies

How can a film that is against capitalism, then turn around and charge people to see it? How does that work?

The Big Lie Movie of Michael Moore is being Used by Violent Dictators like Eva Morales, Libya Qaddafi, Hugo Chavez , & Iran Ammadinejad to call Capitalism evil. Is Michael Moore's new movie 'COVER' FOR Failed Collective or Socialist Government Run Fanny Mae & Freddy Mack groups (mostly run by Michael Moore's friendslike Dowd, Frank , Etc.) ?. Between Mega USA Millionaires Michael Moore or Oliver Stone there is quite a bit of Propaganda (Big Lies) for Real Dictators to use . The Shame this brings is that people in countries like Venezuela or Iran , they do Not have Freedom of Speech rights.

He'll make a fortune from the watery eyed liberals. Capitalism at its best. Money grubbing hypocrite.

10 commentors who have already missed the point. "Michael Moore hate capitalism. Michael Moore should no make money." I'm glad they've moved on from "fire bad."

I have yet to see the film, but my understanding is that Moore rails against untethered capitalism (that means no laws to the past 10 commentors). Moore doesn’t mind making money if it’s done with a conscience (able to see the difference between right and wrong).

And to all those people who call Moore a liar or fool, how’s your 401(k) doing?

Yes, because it has to be either all or nothing. I love how the Moore haters think they've got Moore nailed for hypocrisy by using a simplistic black or white argument, especially since making arguments like that is Moore's own biggest flaw.

Okay, MMoore bashers - here's a question:

Have any of you seen his latest movie? No?

Then how could any of you morons possibly question Moore's integrity? How do you know it's 'ironic' that he's earning money from the system he decries? Because you read a review? Or just the title?

Here's a thought - how about all MMoore haters grow up, open your minds the tiniest bit, actually go see the movie, and then offer an opinion? Then, rent "Sicko," compare it to the past few months of 'health care reform debate' headlines, and try and deny he didn't hit the nail on the head. And then check out his bio - all the work he's done for suffering 911 workers, etc.

Nobody- including MMoore - makes a documentary to 'get rich.' The fact that he produces an actual product people are willing to pay for, as opposed to, say, the Wall Street banksters who've stolen tens of trillions of our hard earn cash and have produced absolutely nothing, doesn't make him a hypocrite. You wanna hate - hate those who've ruined - and are continuing to ruin - your economic future, not the guy who has spent his life trying to do the right thing.

I hope you all know that Pure Capitalism does not exist like Pure Communism. Pure Capitalism is really evil that exploits anything and everyone for greed. America is NOT A TRUE CAPITALIST COUNTRY no matter what people tell you. If America was a Pure Capitalist Country it would NOT have Anti-Trust laws, Laws on Monopolies, Labor Laws, Regulated public utilities (water, electricity, sewers), Public schools, Post Office, and etc.

In a pure capitalist society I could pay the lowest wages (forget about minimum wage) sell my product for the highest, Price Fix it with my competitors (Anti-Trust law) to screw over the consumer as much as I want. If I owned the land that supplies the people with water who says I cant sell each drop for $100,000 dollars (Regulated Public Utilities)?

Michael Moore is an exceptionally talented, creative, and energizing person. His views capture the sore points hidden within the American system - issues and concepts that most Americans gloss-over or are hard pressed to understand. We are still a "young country" but one which passionally attaches itself to a rugged national-identity steeped in guns, rugged individualism, greed, and the old wild west mentality. I personally thanks Michael for all of his valued work. Also, it was Michael who, in spite of the present day "health-care-for-all" outcome, that issue has now become the "monkey on the table" and therefore must continued to be addressed by future presidential candidates.
Michael, "continue to live well..." I can't wait to see your newest movie and will be sure to make it available to all of my college-course students.
Sincerely, Karl-Erik Andreasson

No, it's not particularly ironic.

Michael Moore is not objecting to all forms of capitalism. He's objecting to the way huge multi-billion dollar multinational corporations manipulate the agencies and lawmakers that are supposed to regulate them. These organizations work solely for the sake of profit, without any regard for the public good. If fair and reasonable laws get in the way, they simply buy off the lawmakers.

A corporation has no conscience. At least Michael Moore has a conscience and tries to exercise it, whether or not you agree with him.

People who make suggestions for improving the way business is done in the U.S. do not "hate America." They are speaking up for their principles. If they make some money along the way, that's okay with me. In my opinion, they earned it.

Documentary movies are not a good way to get obscenely rich. Most of the revenues from his films go to the theaters and the investors. All of his films combined have grossed less than $200 million. He gets a cut, of course. By comparison, there are over 400 people in the U.S. with net worth of at least $1 billion.

Concern for the public good does not add up to "hating America."

If Michael Moore wanted to do this right, he would have just put this film out and not charged anyone to see it. That way it would have totally avoided any possibility of people saying there is a conflict. This is how you do things with a clear conscience.

The bonus is that more people would have seen the film and especially the disadvantaged would have been able to go see the film on their own, without some "special" announcement that such and such day is "disadvantaged people" day so they could rake publicity on our backs.

What a bunch of ignorant idiots who don't "get" what's going on in this country. It's EVIL! It's SINISTER! It's CRIMINAL! Wake up morons. Moore's simply bringing truth to the mass dumbed down sheep. He's the hero of our time. But, of course it takes a functioning brain to see that. Tis a problem in America.

If Mr. Moore really hated capitalism he would make his film available for free internet download.

Sarah, you're a sell out. You think America is the supreme example of everything good in the world. Well, this movie is a slap of reality that people like you probably need. I was you once and I got the slap in the face too.

Capitalism has severe problems and it turns people into evil minions of greed. There is no cure either. You can't go to a "corporate American church" because they have long since rebelled against the Apostolic Church and have been grounded in corporate marketing and greed. You can't appeal to Americans "common sense" because the Republicrats have portrayed free thinkers as "liberals" or "socialists". It's really sick.

Cuba was "rescued" from the Batista's by a revolution. Cuban people were being exploited. They basically went from one extreme to the other. That's not the solution either but it's no worse than what's going on here.

My advice is for all of you reading this to please turn off the TV, the propaganda, read history, and come up with your own free thoughts. You're not going to get the truth from corporate American media. You won't get it from loyal corporate employees.

Sure, Moore should not charge admission to avoid being a 'hypocrite' - how many dumb people out there are there? (Enough to elect George W. two times - aside from the big money CEO's that is who knew exactly for whom W was working - Them)
Scores of hard working people made this film. Have you ever watched the credits run, after a film is over? Or are you in too much of a hurry to care?
People need to be paid for their time and effort. Michael Moore himself needs to be paid - and he did not spend just a few weeks directing a film; he has been working on it for many months.
Funny that people with such a simplistic idea of what doing good may be can get more upset that they had to pay to see a film than about the abuses of financial capitalism that have laid waste to the livelihoods, homesteads, families and futures of so many. Maybe those who cry so loudly about Moore being a bad person find it really difficult to imagine (and imagination is essential for understanding in a moral view of the world) that the CEOs who run the US economy and try their hardest to override the vast majority of Americans in telling Congress and the President what to do are motivated by greed which is far over on the evil side; and that the system which, unregulated by law, under force of their influence - which has held sway since Reagan opened wide the doors of government to the wishes of big business and finance has served to make those with insatiable greed richer upon the suffering of the ordinary American. Unregulated capitalism does not serve the human needs of ordinary people - it may serve a good number while things are good, but not without hurting a good number of others. It is amazing that Moore's vocal critics cannot accept the truths he aims to expose and to educate America morally about, when the effects of naked greed on the part of the extremely wealthy are so dramatic, and the heroism of those who fight back (such as the workers in the Chicago company shut down by Citibank) is so clear and moving an image of humanity and solidarity among those who care for human values.

Loved the movie - Good to know who are the greediest, and it's fun seeing the light shone on financial snakes - hope Michael Moore continutes to make the fortune he deserves from having the courage to show what's what.

Ah ha. This one sided liberal "documentery" opened in 8th place. Maybe America is ready to embrace socialism as a way of life.


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