- Despite a slow start, the film Gran Turismo has crossed the $100 million mark at the box office.
- Gran Turismo tells the true story of Jann Mardenborough, a race car driver who learned his skills from playing the video game Gran Turismo.
- While critics gave mixed reviews, audiences have overwhelmingly approved of the film, giving it a 98% audience approval rating.
When Gran Turismo arrived in theaters last month, it performed abysmally at the box office and only managed a $17.4 million debut gross. While it blundered the start, it seems like its zoomed ahead to regain the lead in the last lap.
Granted, the film finished first at the box office that weekend but it was because there was no strong contender for the position. The fiercest competition came from Barbie, which had been in theaters for over a month and had enjoyed an incredible run. Unfortunately, Gran Turismo dropped by 64% the following weekend for a $6.6 million gross.
Given Gran Turismo's slow start, many of us were not expecting it to get far in the race. Yet, per latest box office data, the film has now grossed over $100 million. Currently, it has grossed $39 million at the domestic box office and $63 million in international markets for a total of $102 million.
Gran Turismo tells the true life story of race car driver Jann Mardenborough and the challenges he overcame to become a professional race car driver. Mardenborough was a teenager who learned how to race from playing the racing simulator video game Gran Turismo.
He was so good at it that Nissan invited him to their academy where they trained exceptional Gran Turismo players and helped them go professional. Mardenborough was one of the few who made the cut. Unfortunately, he had an accident in his very first race that saw him severely injured and a spectator killed.
For the critics, the story hardly impressed. For context, the film only managed a 64% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes indicating mixed reviews. However, the story resonated with the people who really matter: audiences. They were overwhelming in their approval and combined to give it a 98% audience approval rating on the same platform.
Gran Turismo was originally slated for release on August 11. However, Sony delayed its premiere to August 25 because the SAG-AFTRA strike meant the actors involved couldn't promote it. Meanwhile, the company showed previews in select theaters.
Why did Sony pursue this strategy? The speculation is that the company was hoping word of mouth would drive people to theaters. While we wouldn't say the film has been a massive success – it has a $60 million budget, we believe Sony's strategy has paid off, albeit modestly.
Gran Turismo is still racing its way through theaters across the globe.