Vulture

Skip to content, or skip to search.

the take

Is ‘Across the Universe’ the Next ‘High School Musical’?

Shrieeeeeek!Courtesy of Revolution Studios

Variety reports this morning that Across the Universe — Julie Taymor's Beatles musical, written off weeks ago as a flop — has finally entered the box-office top ten after expanding from 364 to 954 screens over the weekend. Could it be the new teen sensation? The L.A. Times thinks so, running a Chris Lee piece on Friday speculating that teenage girls could make the PG-13 romance a cult hit after all.

"You go up to a group of people and say, 'Who wants to see "Across the Universe" this weekend?' " [a 15-year-old girl] explained. "The songs are addicting. Everyone who goes to see it has the soundtrack. I listen to it every day. I hear people singing the songs around school."


This reminds us of when we were sophomores and for like a month all anyone listened to was the soundtrack to Imagine: John Lennon. What's the difference this time around?

Well, to start, teen fans have a couple of heartthrobs to fixate on in Evan Rachel Wood and, especially, Jim Sturgess, who at TRL last week inspired screams from teenage fans that made us think for a second we were watching Paul McCartney or something. Across the Universe has a long way to go to recoup its production costs — so far it's earned $12.9 million, and it cost a reported $45 million to make — but at the very least this thing is going to make a mint on DVD.

Box Office Grows Darwinian [Variety]
Is this the next cult sensation? [LAT]

Earlier: Our Ten Favorite Beatles Covers of All Time