Even the biggest Broadway hits can sustain success for so much time.
According to box office figures, “The Book of Mormon” — now ten years old– slipped below $1 million last week for the second time this year. “Mormon” has been a juggernaut for years. But as I’ve reported since the start of the summer the show has been slowing down. Discount seats have been available on Stubhub and other websites.
The softening of the “Mormon” box office comes just before the holiday season will either bolster the show or point to its eventual ending. The one other time it fell below the million dollar mark was the week of March 3, 2019. Other wise producer Scott Rudin has managed report weekly grosses all year just above that line.
Meanwhile, another Rudin production, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” has been in steady decline since changing casts a few weeks ago. Ed Harris replaced Jeff Daniels, who’d been bringing in weekly grosses that exceeded $2 million. But this past week “Mockingbird” fell to $1.6 million, its fourth straight week in a nosedive that should continue unabated.
Rudin had the same problem with “Hello, Dolly!” when Bette Midler and her cast left. Ticket prices are falling, too, which is only good for the prospective buyers who’ve wanted to see it but couldn’t afford it. Harris is probably terrific as Atticus Finch.
Rudin’s next big show is a revival of “West Side Story” that should be controversial: they’ve chucked the famous Jerome Robbins choreography, and the song “I Feel Pretty.” In the last couple of weeks, many videos have been filmed that will be playing in the background of Ivo von Hove’s production. First performance is December 10th with a long — almost eight weeks– preview period before a February 6th opening night.