Zyzzyx Road (ze-ziz-iks) is a 2006 American thriller film written and directed by John Penney. It stars Leo Grillo, Katherine Heigl, and Tom Sizemore. The film has gained a degree of notoriety due to being considered the lowest grossing movie in history with a domestic gross of $30 USD.
Budget $1.3 million
Box office $30
Release and box office gross
Zyzzyx Road was shown once a day at noon for six days (February 25 – March 2, 2006) at Highland Park Village Theater in Dallas, Texas, a movie theater rented by the producers for $1,000. The limited release was deliberate: Grillo was uninterested in releasing the film domestically until it underwent foreign distribution, but needed to fulfill the U.S. release obligation required by the Screen Actors Guild for low-budget films (films with budgets less than $2.5 million that are not for the direct-to-video market).
The strategy had the side effect of making the film at the time the lowest-grossing film of all time, earning just $30 at the box office from six patrons. Unofficially, its opening weekend netted $20. The $10 difference is due to a personal refund by Grillo to makeup artist Sheila Moore, who had worked on the film, and her friend.
The similarly-named Zzyzx has also (mistakenly) been cited as the lowest-grossing film of all time, due to the similar titles and release dates of the films.
The film was released on DVD in 23 countries, including Bulgaria, Indonesia and Portugal and by the end of 2006 had earned about $368,000. In September 2012, the film was released on DVD in North America, one carrier being Redbox.