A film aimed at conservatives and another at history buffs debuted to moderate success this weekend.
"Atlas Shrugged: Part I," the first in a potential trilogy of films based on the 1957 novel by Ayn Rand, opened in 299 theaters and grossed $1.7 million, according to an estimate from Salt Lake City-based booking service Rocky Mountain Pictures. And "The Conspirator," about the trial of a woman accused of plotting to assassinate Abraham Lincoln, ended up with a $3.9 million take from 706 theaters.
"Atlas Shrugged" cost around $10 million to produce and was financed entirely by John Aglialoro, the chief executive of the exercise equipment manufacturer Cybex, who had no experience in Hollywood.
Despite a lack of almost any traditional advertising, the movie found an audience in certain parts of the country. It performed best in the suburb of Duluth, Ga., where the film collected $53,832 just on Friday and Saturday. Producer Harmon Kaslow said the film's backers organized a number of events in certain communities to create awareness about the film.