- “Sound of Freedom” is a box-office hit, taking in $90 million since opening July 4.
- The movie is a huge success for an indie — and there’s clearly a market for this kind of content.
- Movies marketed at conservative Christians have also done well in the past.
“God’s children are not for sale,” says the hero of the movie “Sound of Freedom,” the box office hit about a former Homeland Security agent who goes rogue to save children from sex trafficking.
Though the movie is not overtly political, there are some religious references. Some have expressed shock at its success — the film has made $90 million so far, according to Box Office Mojo, against a $14.5 million budget — but there is precedent for more overtly religious content finding an audience.
The film has been praised by commentators on Fox News, the most-watched cable news station, and right-wing pundits with large online followings. Former President Donald Trump himself planned to screen the film Wednesday.
Movies marketed to conservative Christians have defied expectations and crushed at the box office in the past.
Earlier this year, the biblical drama “His Only Son” (also from Utah-based distributor Angel Studios, which is behind “Sound of Freedom”) took in $12 million against a reported $250,000 budget. The “God’s Not Dead” film series has also seen success at the box office since the first movie came out in 2014, raking in $64 million worldwide against a $2 million budget.
The faith-based TV series “The Chosen” (another from Angel Studios) has also found success in its three seasons. When the first two episodes of season 3 had a special event theatrical release in the fall, the show pulled in $8.7 million in one weekend.
“Sound of Freedom” has caused controversy, in part because of star Jim Caviezel’s ties to QAnon and the questionable figure his character is based on. The movie has also been accused of misrepresenting the realities of anti-trafficking work.
But it’s the biggest hit yet for Angel Studios, which is proving there is a market for stories that cater to conservative Christians.