“His Only Son” celebrated Easter a week early.
The Angel Studios’ film, the first in its new wave of theatrical releases, came in third place in early box office estimates over the weekend. Deadline.com reports the faith-based drama brought in $5.5 million on just under 2,000 screens.
That’s roughly half of what most major new releases score.
Here’s the film’s official description:
Abraham (Nicolas Mouawad), his son, and their two servants journey for three days to the place of the offering. Along the way, the men encounter dangers and trials as Abraham silently relives memories spanning the decades he and his wife Sarah (Sara Sayed) longed for the son God had promised…the son he must now lay upon the altar. Answering age-old questions as to why the Lord would require such a sacrifice, HIS ONLY SON profoundly explores mankind’s relationship to God and encourages viewers to turn inward and ask: Can your faith still stand when you are asked to give everything?
The idea of what it means to have faith is depicted in many Christian-themed films. This particular film makes it really hit home.
Audiences filled that chasm, giving the movie a 95 percent “fresh” rating.
The story behind “His Only Son” is nearly as compelling.
The film’s budget was a minuscule $250,000, smaller than even most indie features. Former U.S. Marine David Helling, who directed and co-wrote “His Only Son,” served from 2005 to 2010, including a stint in Iraq.
He went to film school courtesy of the G.I. Bill, and “His Only Son” marks his first feature-length film following five shorts.
The film’s P&A budget (Prints & Advertising) were covered by a crowdfunding campaign, which Angel Studios says marks an industry first.
The film, like many released in recent years, endured sizable delays due to the pandemic. Helling says it took roughly five and a half years from start to finish, but those delays proved fortuitous.
“It seems like Christ is on the minds and the mouths of so many people around the country and around the world and it’s like, ‘Wow, this film could not come out at a…better time,” Helling told Fox News.
A $5 million haul isn’t just noteworthy for an indie film with no major studio behind it. Several Oscar-bait films from last year’s awards season made less in their opening frame. Think “She Said,” “Tar,” “Bones and All” and “The Banshees of Inisherin.”