2013 Best Picture Nominees: What ‘Dallas Buyers Club’ Means to Comcast Corporation

Already a two-time Golden Globe winner, the biographical drama from Focus Features could end up one of Comcast Corporation’s most profitable movies.

Mar 1, 2014 at 9:06AM

Dallas Buyers Club Poster

Matthew McConaughey won Best Actor at the Golden Globes and is up for an Oscar in the same category. Sources: Facebook, Focus Features.

Whether or not Dallas Buyers Club wins the Oscar for Best Picture, the film is already a huge winner for Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) subsidiary Focus Features, Fool contributor Tim Beyers says in the following video.

Starring Matthew McConaughey as an electrician stricken with AIDS who takes unusual steps to get the medicine he and others need, Box Office Mojo places Dallas Buyers Club in the "Gay / Lesbian" category alongside such films as MGM's The Birdcage (1996), Time Warner's Interview with the Vampire (1994), and Focus Features' Brokeback Mountain (1994). All three generated interest from the Academy, with Brokeback winning three Oscars. Dallas Buyers Club is nominated for six statues, in the following categories:

  • Best Picture
  • Best Actor (Matthew McConaughey)
  • Best Supporting Actor (Jared Leto)
  • Best Original Screenplay (Craig Borten and Melisa Wallack)
  • Best Achievement in Editing
  • Best Achievement in Makeup

Impressive, to be sure, and yet dwarfed by the film's financial achievements. Dallas Buyers Club opened on Nov. 1 and then stayed in theaters nearly 17 weeks. More than 32% of its $24.8 million in U.S. grosses arrived after the film's mid-January nomination to the "Best Picture" list. Worldwide, the film has grossed $30.8 million as of this writing.

Not bad, but we've seen independent films do better. What makes Dallas Buyers Club special is the $5 million Focus Features spent on making the film. Figuring another $5 million for marketing and distribution puts box office break-even at a mere $10 million. Dallas Buyers Club had earned an estimated $15.4 million in profit as of this writing, after accounting for cinemas' 50% cut. A spectacular margin by any measure, Tim says.

Now it's your turn to weigh in. How do you rate Dallas Buyers Club's chances at the Oscars? Did you see the film? Please watch the video to get Tim's full take and then leave a comment to let us know where you stand, and whether you would buy, sell, or short Comcast stock at current prices.

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Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team and the Motley Fool Supernova Odyssey I mission. He owned shares of Time Warner at the time of publication. Check out Tim's web home and portfolio holdings or connect with him on Google+Tumblr, or Twitter, where he goes by @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader.

The Motley Fool recommends Facebook. The Motley Fool owns shares of Facebook. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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