Perhaps only someone like Steve Jobs could inspire two people as different as Ashton “Dude, where’s my car?” Kutcher and Aaron “blablahblahblahmeister” Sorkin to create separate biopics within only four years of his passing.
Just based on their respective resumes and their general reputations, it would be safe to assume that nearly every sentient being on the planet was unsurprised that Sorkin’s take, “Steve Jobs” (84 percent favorable reviews on Rotten Tomatoes) was better reviewed than Kutcher’s “Jobs” (27 percent on Rotten Tomatoes).
But here’s a plot twist few would have predicted: Kutcher’s version looks like it will be the winner at the box office.
Released in August 2013, Kutcher’s move made $16.1 million at the U.S. box office, compared to $17.8 million for Sorkin’s movie since its release in October 2015, according to Box Office Mojo. Close, with a slight edge to Sorkin’s, right?
But here’s the kicker: According to Box Office Mojo, Kutcher’s movie went on to make $19.8 million overseas, for a total box office of $35.9 million.
Sorkin’s movie has so far made only $6.6 million overseas (though it is just opening in a few key markets, including France). Still, with a $24.8 million total worldwide haul so far, Sorkin’s movie is going to have a tough climb ahead to match Kutcher’s.
And even if that happens, Kutcher’s movie would remain the more profitable of the two.
To be clear, neither movie will be considered a hit under any definition of the word. But the fact that Sorkin’s movie is struggling so mightily to match Kutcher’s shows just how big of a disappointment it has turned out to be.
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