Faith-Based I Can Only Imagine Film Makes $17M at Box Office Opening Weekend

By Nancy Flory Published on March 19, 2018

Roadside Attractions-Lionsgates’s faith-based film I Can Only Imagine finished its first weekend with box office sales of $17.1 million at 1,629 nationwide theaters, double what it was expected to make. It ranked third, behind Marvel’s Black Panther and Tomb Raider, reported Variety. It beat Disney’s A Wrinkle in Time as well as a romantic movie starring a gay character.

Tomb Raider opened in 3,854 theaters but only beat I Can Only Imagine by $6 million. The Christian film received an A+ CinemaScore.

I Can Only Imagine tells the real-life story of Bart Millard, lead singer of the band MercyMe, and his journey to write the song by the same name. The hit I Can Only Imagine has become the best-selling Christian single of all time.

Millard spoke to CBN after the premiere. “The first time I saw it, it was really emotional,” he said. “I guess they did a good job because they stirred some emotions that I spent most of my life trying to bury.”

Lee Strobel, A Case for Christ author, encouraged people to see the film. He tweeted: “Let’s get out to theaters and support the new faith-based movie I Can Only Imagine, which is stunning Hollywood with its strong opening box office performance. It’s an excellent movie and we need to get behind solid Christian films if we expect more of them in the future.”

“We knew that it was going to do well but we never expected a $17 million opening,” Distributor Roadside Attractions’ president Howard Cohen said. “We’re planning to be on well over 2,000 screens next weekend.”

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