Fifa film United Passions scores pathetic $607 opening weekend as critics pan 'pure excrement'

That's a pretty horrendous box office own goal by anyone's standards

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The Independent Culture

Fifa-financed film United Passions has scored a horrendous own goal after opening to just $607 (£397) at the US box office.

Pulp Fiction actor Tim Roth stars as Sepp Blatter, the former president of the world football governing body who finally resigned after 17 years last week amid persistent allegations of corruption within the organisation.

Frederic Auburtin's movie debuted in ten cinemas including the FilmBar in Phoenix, which told The Hollywood Reporter that just one person had bought a ticket to see it.

The United Passions world premiere was similarly disastrous, with only French actor Gerard Depardieu, who plays Fifa founder Jules Rimet, turning up on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival last year.

The film, which currently has a 2.6 rating on movie database IMDB, follows "the passing of the Fifa baton" from Rimet to his association president successors Joao Havelange and Blatter.

Critics have described United Passions as "pure cinematic excrement" (thanks for that, Guardian) and "one of the most unwatchable films in recent memory...a dishonest bit of corporate-suite sanitizing that's no good even for laughs" (courtesy of the New York Times).

Last October, The Independent reported that United Passions, which cost £19 million to make, had raked back just £125,000 in six months in selected countries. Funds had been taken from the 2014 World Cup budget, Fifa said.

 

Aubertin told the New York Times that Blatter co-produced "nearly 80 per cent" of the film and it was "very, very difficult because he is the boss".

"I didn't have the freedom to do a Michael Moore movie at all," he said. "If I started the movie with flashlights and sirens coming to Zurich, like what happened last Wednesday, I knew if we would write any line like this everyone would say: 'What are you doing man? Come on.'"

To put United Passions' dire opening weekend into perspective, Melissa McCarthy movie Spy took $30 million. As of yet no UK release date has been confirmed.

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