Oliver Stone’s self-interested charity

We all know about the cult of the opening weekend: film producers will do almost

anything to maximise their opening weekend gross. In the case of the the new

Oliver Stone film, World Trade

Center, that includes standard tactics like opening very wide – on

over 2,000 screens nationwide. But they’ve added an interesting twist: according

to a press

release today (PDF), WTC

charities will receive 10 percent of all “World Trade Center”

ticket sales in every theater across the United States for the film’s

opening five days, from Wednesday, August 9, 2006 through Sunday, August 13,


Got that? If you want any of your $10.25 to go to a WTC-related charity, then

you’d better go during the opening weekend. After that, the price of the ticket

just goes back to the filmmakers as usual.

I think it’s great that some of the proceeds from World Trade Center ticket

sales is going to WTC charities, of course. I just find the way they’re doing

it to be a little too cynical for my taste.

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