Groupon sells 190,000 tickets to 'Lincoln Lawyer'
A person familiar with the situation confirmed that independent studio Lionsgate sold that many tickets to the Matthew McConaughey thriller in its 48-hour promotion, which allowed users to pay $6 to see the movie no matter the price at the theater.
Lionsgate, working with the online ticketing service Fandango, is making up the difference, regardless of whether it's a $7 children's matinee ticket or $15 for an adult to see the movie at night in Los Angeles or New York. Executives at the studio believe that cost will be worth it since the Groupon agreement resulted in 10 million to 15 million e-mails sent promoting the movie.
As of Friday evening, about 20,000 people had already redeemed their Groupon tickets for "The Lincoln Lawyer," the person familiar with the matter said. People are allowed to use the discount anytime during the film's run.
When it reports box office results on Sunday, Lionsgate will count the regular ticket price for Groupon users who paid $6, a practice that will slightly exaggerate the money generated by the picture.
Groupon also offers some further discounts, such as $5 in "Groupon bucks" for new users, which could bring the price of a "Lincoln Laywer" ticket down to $1. However, the Internet company pays for that difference, not Lionsgate.
Based on early box office results Friday evening, "Lincoln Lawyer" appeared to be in a very close weekend box-office race, according to a person with access to ticket sales data. The McConaughey movie, the Bradley Cooper thriller "Limitless," the science-fiction comedy "Paul" and the previously opened action film "Battle: Los Angeles" and animated comedy "Rango" all are on track to generate $12 million to $15 million for the weekend, the person said.
-- Ben Fritz
Photo: Matthew McConaughey and Ryan Phillippe in "The Lincoln Lawyer." Credit: Saeed Adyana / Lionsgate