Iowa theater owners are predicting that Sarah Palin’s “The Undefeated” will bomb.
The Des Moines Register talked to a couple of local theater owners, and to put it mildly their reaction to the idea of showing Sarah Palin’s “documentary” about herself was to put it mildly, less than enthusiastic,
“Typical political movies don’t do two cents at the box office,” said Brian Fridley, a co-owner of R.L Fridley Theatres Inc., which has 22 locations and 89 screens in Iowa. No one cares but the Kool-Aid drinkers, whether they’re on the right or the left.
Denise Mahon, owner of the Varsity Theatre near Drake University in Des Moines, said no one has approached her about running the picture, and she has little interest in it. But out of curiosity, Mahon called her New York distributor today to try to track down details about where in Iowa the film will debut.
Friendly who called himself an independent thinking Republican later added, “Why would you do a movie? Are you going to judge your candidacy on whether people want to see the movie or not?” he said. “I think she really shot herself in the foot when she couldn’t put up with the pressure as governor. How is she going to be as president? If she’s under pressure, is she just going to resign?”
Palin has no campaign presence in Iowa, and hasn’t been in the state since her book tour swung through on December 2, 2010. Sarah Palin has never polled well in Iowa. The American Research Group’s latest Iowa survey had Palin at 4% in the state. This survey was taken before Huckabee and Trump each announced that they were not running, but it is unlikely that Palin has made up the 13 points that she was trailing Mitt Romney by in April.
The theater owners aren’t interested in Palin’s documentary because no one except Palin fans are going to go see it. Most campaign documentaries, if you want to call Palin’s film that, are usually shown for free. The only for profit political documentary filmmaker with box office appeal is Michael Moore, and even he couldn’t make a pro-Sarah Palin propaganda film that would interest moviegoers.
The number of Sarah Palin bombs is too numerous to list in their entirety here, but consider that Palin is releasing a movie when she could only draw 6,500 people to hear her speak at a Tea Party rally in Wisconsin. Sarah Palin had to buy her way on to the bestseller list when her latest book America By Heart was released, and then there was her special “Real American Stories.” The program that Fox News wishes you would forget.
Sarah Palin is not box office. People whose negative ratings approach 60% are never going to draw huge amounts of cash. Theater owners don’t want to show her movie because they don’t want to waste screen space on something that will make no money. (The profit margin for a theater owner is already thin enough. Much of their profit comes from concessions sales, and Sarah Palin’s flick isn’t going to sell much soda and popcorn).
Instead of actually campaigning in Iowa, Sarah Palin expects people to spend money to watch a fictionalized account of her life on film. In Iowa where close candidate contact and retail politics are the norm, Palin’s movie strategy is epic disaster worthy of the full Michael Bay treatment.
Sarah Palin has failed at everything else she has ever tried in her life, and now she is trying to drag some poor Iowa theater owner down with her.
Sarah Palin’s capacity for failure knows no limits. Much like Palin herself, “The Undefeated” is heading for certain defeat.