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Independent or Indie films seem to be a hit among the movie buffs in the west with films like Blue Ruin and Frank and Slumdog Millionaire turning into box office favourites. Here is a list of some of the most financially successful indie films, reports a popular website.
Passion of the Christ: It was back in 2004 when Passion of the Christ released. For the movie, actor Mel Gibson got back to the director’s chair as he told the story of Jesus Christ’s final twelve hours ending with his crucifixion. Thanks to the subject, the movie was mired in controversy, but that only fuelled the box office success. Made for $30 million, the movie went on to gross in excess of $611 million by the end of its theatrical run.
Slumdog Millionaire – Released in 2009, Slumdog Millionaire was directed by Danny Boyle. The film was based on the book by Vikas Swarup. Simon Beaufoy adapted it into a screenplay. Slumdog Millionaire was the most praised movie of 2009, and seemed to win over critics and audiences wherever it played. It minted $377 million and also won Oscars including Best Picture and Best Director.
My Big Fat Greek Wedding: It hit the big screen in 2002, and saw Joel Zwick in the director’s chair. The movie follows a young Greek woman who falls in love with a non-Greek, and struggles to get her family to accept him. My Big Fat Greek Wedding, made for $5 million, took a whopping $368 million.
Shakespeare in Love: Work on the film started in 1991, when Universal Pictures was behind the film and Julia Roberts was in the lead role. However, when Roberts pulled out, Universal also decided to leave the film. Miramax swooped in, in a bid to save the project. Gwyneth Paltrow, Joseph Fiennes, Colin Firth, Judi Dench, and Ben Affleck were all on board, and a $25 million budget was in place. Shakespeare In Love was one of the most critically praised films of 1998 and went on to scoop Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress. It earned $289 million.
The Blair Witch Project: The 1999 release was made for a very modest $35,000. However, it was to be a movie that would change the way horror films were shot and movies marketed forever. It used viral marketing as a way to tell people about the film; never before had chat rooms and movie sites powered a film in such a way. The film grossed $248 million at the global box office, making it one of the most successful independent movies.
Juno: Directed by Jason Reitman, the 2008 film was about a young girl who has an unplanned pregnancy and must decide what to do about her unborn baby. It took over $231 million at the box office – it was made for around $7 million.