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  • Writer's pictureThomas Bonifield

A Solid Showing for Chonda Pierce's "Roll with It"

The film from the Christian comedian claims a spot in the Top-20 at the weekend box office.

Chonda Pierce appears in a scene from "Roll with It."
Chonda Pierce appears in a scene from "Roll with It." Image: Third Coast Content.

Roll with It made the most of its limited theatrical release, bringing in $220,000 according to Box Office Mojo, and that performance put it in 20th place overall for the weekend. It is worth pointing out that the comedy actually played in theaters only on Saturday, meaning it would have done a lot better had this been a Friday-through-Sunday performance like the rest of the movies in the list enjoyed.

The faith-based film, which stars Chonda Pierce playing a down-on-her-luck waitress who hopes to win a karaoke competition to avoid foreclosure on her house, was written and directed by Christian filmmaker Chris Dowling and featured several actors - in addition to Pierce - who are Believers: Mark Christopher Lawrence, Shari Rigby and Grammy-winning singer Michael W. Smith.

Christian Film Blog finds it head-scratching that for a film with that kind of talent, the marketing budget somehow did not materialize as expected. Pierce even said in a social media post that she and others, "scraped our own money together to market this film after the movie makers told us they had none," adding that her manager "decided to put (in) his own money to get some last minute publicity." In that connection, the Kentucky native mentioned a figure of $100,000, before stating that a sum of that size "does not go very far in publicity dollars."

All of which leaves us wondering how this was not handled more efficaciously. Overall, the movie played in theaters for three days - on a Tuesday, a Thursday, and the aforementioned Saturday - and generated total box office revenue of $757,000. It seems certain that a more robust marketing spend and a longer, more traditional release would have helped this film bring in dramatically more.


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