'Unplanned' Shatters Box Office Estimates, Outpaces 'Captain Marvel' in Per Theater Total


The pro-life film “Unplanned” took in double the estimated ticket sales during its opening weekend and topped Disney’s “Captain Marvel” in per theater sales.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, tracking of ticket sales heading into the movie’s debut weekend suggested “Unplanned” would garner $3 million; however, the Christian-based film ended up earning $6.1 million at the box office, landing it in the top 5.

The movie screened in 1,059 theaters, giving it a per-theater average of $5,770 and putting it slightly ahead of the Disney distributed “Captain Marvel’s” $5,100 tally in 3,985 theaters. The superhero box-office smash was currently in its third week of release, Box Office Mojo reported.

“Unplanned’s” $6.1 million total marks the second-highest debut for the faith-based Pure Flix studio, behind the $7.6 million opening for 2016’s “God’s Not Dead 2.”

“Unplanned” is also the first R-rated movie to be released by Pure Flix, though some in the media argued the rating was meant to hinder its reach.

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The film tells the story of Abby Johnson, a former director of a Planned Parenthood clinic turned influential pro-life advocate.

Deadline reported that most cable television networks refused to air ads promoting “Unplanned” due to its subject matter of abortion.

Exceptions were the Fox News Channel and faith-based media outlets such as the Christian Broadcasting Network.

Are you glad "Unplanned" did well at the box office?

The film was also promoted through faith leaders, including evangelist Franklin Graham, and conservative online outlets such as Blaze TV, Live Action and The Western Journal.

“Unplanned’s” online push experienced a further obstacle when Twitter banned its account for a two-to-three-hours period on Saturday, citing a rules violation from a related account.

Twitter quickly reversed course following a torrent of tweets demanding an explanation for the ban.

“Unplanned” thanked “the people who maliciously and falsely reported UnplannedMovie to @Twitter,” because it turned out to be a blessing in disguise, as the number of followers skyrocketed from approximately 7,000 before the ban to more than 260,000 as of Monday morning.

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The “Unplanned” account was still reporting “shenanigans” on Sunday, asserting 50,000 of its followers disappeared over the weekend.

Additionally, actress Patricia Heaton tweeted that she and others were being blocked from following the movie.

Despite all the controversy, Pure Flix CEO Michael Scott expressed satisfaction with how “Unplanned” has been received.

“To bring the story of Abby Johnson to audiences and have them show up in such large numbers shows how abortion is so important to bring to audiences,” Scott told The Hollywood Reporter. “We hope that those on both sides of the debate will see Unplanned and begin to have their own dialogue. This film can be that spark to bring more hearts and minds to understanding the value of life.”

The film’s star, Ashley Bratcher, who portrays Johnson, tweeted a picture with the pro-life activist, writing “this is what a real superhero looks like.”

“Unplanned” will be expanding to 1,700 theaters for its second weekend out.

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 3,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Graduated dean's list from West Point
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith