If I were to enumerate things that the majority of Americans love for reasons that I don't really get, Katherine Heigl and Groupon would probably be on the top of the list (right behind sushi, Taylor Swift, and Two and a Half Men). So it makes sense that the two paired up this weekend after Heigl's new action-comedy vehicle, One For The Money, made its weekend box-office debut at third place, possibly in part due to a Groupon deal promoting the film.
According to E! Online, One For The Money's $12-million gross this weekend far exceeded industry insiders' expectations, who estimated that the film would bring in about $7 million to $9 million. An exec says that the film's Groupon deal — which offered tickets at $6 a pop, a sixty-percent discount of the average ticket price in some cities — may have accounted for the flm's strong weekend performance, as eleven percent of the film's surveyed audience this weekend used the deal. "These are people who wouldn't have gone to see the film," he says.
Lately, the press has been speculating that both Groupon and Katherine Heigl's career are headed down the toilet, and it's probably unwise to draw any conclusions about either entity's future from this weekend's box office. If nothing else, though, One For The Money's performance suggests two things: a) production companies could very well start offering more deals like this in the future, and b) there's still a sizable demographic that finds both formulaic romantic comedies and cutesy online ad copy charming, so maybe Groupon and Katherine Heigl should team up and make a movie together. Expect to see $45 for a Mani-Pedi-Facial at Kim's Nails (40% Off), in which Katherine Heigl plays a sassy yet soft-hearted manicurist looking for love under all the wrong cuticles, coming soon to a theater near you.