• Thomas Bonifield

"American Underdog" Lands in Top-5 at the Box Office for 3rd Straight Weekend

Updated: Jan 13

The biopic about Christian athlete Kurt Warner managed the feat despite the first drop in its theater count.

Zachary Levi (left) poses for a picture with Kurt Warner during production of "American Underdog."
Zachary Levi (left) poses for a picture with Kurt Warner during production of "American Underdog." Image: Kingdom Story Company/Lionsgate.

American Underdog rung up $2.3 million in ticket revenue at the box office over the weekend, according to The Numbers website, putting it in fifth place overall. That also means this faith-based picture about retired Hall-of-Fame football player Kurt Warner has finished in the Top-5 all three weekends since its release on Christmas Day.


The movie, from Christian co-directors Andrew Erwin and Jon Erwin, stars Zachary Levi as Warner, a quarterback whose rise from undrafted prospect to Super-Bowl winner is certainly among the best Cinderella stories in the history of the National Football League. But this is more than just a sports picture, and Anna Paquin helps to bring the private side of Warner's journey to life, starring as his wife Brenda.


Total revenue for American Underdog thus far equals $18.6 million, which is decent, though not outstanding; there is no word on the production budget, but we're guessing it's somewhere in the $12 - $15 million range. The film's theater count dropped for the first time this weekend - going down by 85 venues from 2,813 to 2,728 - which means ticket sales figures are going to start dropping as well.


As things now stand, it would surprise us if the film tops $25 million at the box office, meaning neither of the Erwin Brothers' first two films in their partnership with Lionsgate will have turned in impressive performances. In fairness, the first picture - I Still Believe - actually won opening night at the box office only to be shut down a week later when coronavirus safety measures closed theaters across the country in March of 2020, and attendance levels are still not back to normal.


Though the sample size is small and the circumstances challenging, one nevertheless has to wonder what the studio executives from Lionsgate are now thinking about the bold move they've made into the world of faith-based filmmaking by teaming up with the Erwins. The Alabama brothers' next picture - The Unbreakable Boy, which they are producing, not directing - is set to release in March, so we won't have to wait long to see if they can up their game on the revenue front.