Photo: Lionsgate FilmsWe knew the chances for this one were slim, but now that the results are in, it's sort of epic.
Miley Cyrus' film "LOL," made a total of only $46,500 this weekend, Movie City News estimates. That is just a few hundred dollars more than what "Marvel's The Avengers" -- which drew a record-breaking weekend total of more than $200 million -- took in per theater: $46,100, according to MCN.
Sure, it had a much narrower release, appearing in only 105 theaters nationwide, but "LOL" made less per-theater ($440) than any other film in conventional U.S. theaters this weekend, running behind "Wrath of the Titans," which made $640 per theater (and has been out for more than a month).
Cyrus is already on damage control. Today she tweeted:
Thank u so much for everyone who went to see LOL. It is a film I loved making and I am proud of.... That's really all that matters to me. ❤
— Miley Ray Cyrus (@MileyCyrus) May 7, 2012
"My guess is Lionsgate had test screenings that were catastrophic," says box office analyst Len Klady of "LOL"'s weak weekend reception, adding that he wasn't aware of any conventional advertising going on. Indeed, the film did not have a premiere event and Cyrus did no interviews with major outlets for "LOL," indicating much-curtailed -- if non existent -- publicity. Moreover, the film was not screened for review, leading one journalist to say, "...for all we know, 'LOL' stands for lack of laughter. Proceed with caution."
"Miley Cyrus has a real image problem," Klady adds. "Basically she's been undone by 'Saturday Night Live'… people don't take her seriously."
Based on a French film, "LOL" was meant to mark Miley Cyrus' transition into more serious acting. Also starring Demi Moore, "LOL" has been given the silent treatment by Lionsgate.
There did seem a last-ditch attempt to get a groundswell of Miley's fans (she has 5.6 million followers on Twitter) to the theaters where it was opening. Stories on mileycyrusworld.org and mileyraycyrus.org -- which literally listed every theater and city in which "LOL" would be screening -- attempted to create hype. From Miley Cyrus World on Friday (the day "LOL" was released in the U.S.):
...we need a lot of people to see the movie when it's released. If more people go to see it, Lionsgate might expand it into more theaters — which is already a possibility so we need all of you fans in those areas to go and see the movie!
Apparently the fans didn't bite.
[Y! MOVIE PHOTOS: Miley Cyrus]
"It definitely doesn't bode well for Miley Cyrus' career," Phil Contrino, editor of Boxoffice.com, told Yahoo! Movies of "LOL"'s limited release. "This comes as something of a surprise because ' The Last Song' proved that she could be a draw outside of 'Hannah Montana.' After this, she'll have to ditch the family-friendly stuff and go for something a little more edgy if she wants to stay relevant."
Cyrus' transition to film hasn't been smooth. Her starring role in 2010's "The Last Song" was met with poor reviews and moderate box office success grossing just under $63 million domestically (compared to another, more popular, Nicholas Sparks film " The Notebook," which grossed over $81 million domestically after its 2004 release.)
Cyrus' next film is comedy " So Undercover," in theaters June 27th, co-starring Joshua Bowman and Jeremy Piven.
But with no other films on the horizon (as reflected on IMDB.com), Miley could be throwing in the towel -- at least for now -- on her film career. Another indicator of a departure from cinema, Cyrus is currently rumored to be in talks to take over as host of "X-Factor."
We have reached out to Lionsgate to discuss "LOL." They have yet to return our call.
Watch 'LOL' Theatrical Trailer: