Box Office Performance for Documentary Movies in 2012

Summary for all Years
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RankMovieRelease
Date
Theatrical
Distributor
MPAA
Rating
2012 GrossTickets Sold
1 2016: Obama’s America 7/13/2012 Rocky Mountain Pictures PG $33,349,941 4,189,691
2 Chimpanzee 4/20/2012 Walt Disney G $28,965,459 3,638,876
3 To the Arctic 3D 4/20/2012 Warner Bros. G $10,660,223 1,339,223
4 Born to be Wild 3D 4/8/2011 Warner Bros. G $6,544,388 822,159
5 Hubble 3D 3/19/2010 Warner Bros. G $5,161,084 648,377
6 Flying Monsters 3D 10/6/2011 National Geographic Entertainment Not Rated $4,176,870 524,732
7 Bully 3/30/2012 Weinstein Co. PG-13 $3,483,795 437,662
8 Nitro Circus: The Movie 3D 8/8/2012 ARC Entertainment PG-13 $3,377,000 424,246
9 Pina 1/20/2012 IFC Films PG $3,291,466 413,500
10 Searching for Sugar Man 7/27/2012 Mongrel Media PG-13 $3,058,667 384,254
11 Samsara 8/24/2012 Oscilloscope Pictures PG-13 $2,639,616 331,610
12 Jiro Dreams of Sushi 3/9/2012 Magnolia Pictures PG $2,552,478 320,663
13 The Queen of Versailles 7/20/2012 Magnolia Pictures PG $2,401,999 301,758
14 Gerhard Richter Painting 3/14/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $2,374,911 298,355
15 Under the Sea 3D 2/13/2009 Warner Bros. G $2,197,236 276,034
16 Space Station 4/19/2002 IMAX Films Not Rated $2,084,978 261,931
17 Marley 4/20/2012 Magnolia Pictures PG-13 $1,413,480 177,572
18 Air Racers 3D 4/5/2012 3D Entertainment Not Rated $1,309,987 164,571
19 Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel 9/21/2012 Samuel Goldwyn Films PG-13 $963,138 120,997
20 First Position 5/4/2012 IFC Films Not Rated $908,235 114,099
21 The Imposter 7/13/2012 Indomina Releasing R $901,954 113,310
22 Sea Rex 3D: Journey to a Prehistoric World 5/28/2010 3D Entertainment Not Rated $898,468 112,872
23 Deep Sea 3D 3/3/2006 Warner Bros. G $794,071 99,757
24 Chasing Ice 11/16/2012 National Geographic Entertainment PG-13 $612,089 76,895
25 Undefeated 2/17/2012 Weinstein Co. PG-13 $561,054 70,484
26 Shut Up and Play the Hits 7/18/2012 Oscilloscope Pictures Not Rated $510,334 64,112
27 Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry 7/27/2012 IFC Films R $489,074 61,441
28 The Flat 10/19/2012 IFC Films Not Rated $467,022 58,671
29 Bill W. 8/2/2012 Page 124 Productions Not Rated $456,276 57,321
30 Burn 7/20/2012 Not Rated $416,151 52,280
31 Detropia 9/7/2012 Loki Films Not Rated $377,219 47,389
32 Whores' Glory 4/27/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $306,151 38,461
33 Something From Nothing: The Art of Rap 6/15/2012 Indomina Releasing R $288,738 36,273
34 The Central Park Five 11/23/2012 IFC Films Not Rated $273,747 34,390
35 Stories We Tell 10/12/2012 Mongrel Media PG-13 $241,629 30,355
36 Brooklyn Castle 10/19/2012 Producers Distribution Agency PG $198,664 24,957
37 Somewhere Between 8/24/2012 Long Shot Factory Not Rated $182,784 22,962
38 The House I Live In 10/5/2012 Abramorama Films Not Rated $181,782 22,836
39 The Waiting Room 9/21/2012 International Film Circuit Not Rated $176,277 22,145
40 Crazy Horse 1/18/2012 Zipporah Not Rated $154,691 19,433
41 Hecho en México 11/30/2012 Pantelion Films R $151,133 18,986
42 The Other Dream Team 9/28/2012 Film Arcade Not Rated $134,109 16,847
43 Kumaré 6/20/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $131,909 16,571
44 How to Survive a Plague 9/21/2012 IFC Films Not Rated $123,814 15,554
45 Follow Me: The Yoni Netanyahu Story 5/4/2012 International Film Circuit Not Rated $112,679 14,155
46 Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview 11/16/2011 Landmark Theaters Not Rated $105,710 13,280
47 Wild Horse, Wild Ride 8/24/2012 Screen Media Films PG $94,621 11,887
48 Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare 10/5/2012 Roadside Attractions PG-13 $86,810 10,905
49 Marina Abramovic: The Artist Is Present 6/13/2012 Music Box Films Not Rated $86,637 10,884
50 Hating Breitbart 10/19/2012 Freestyle Releasing R $81,432 10,230
51 5 Broken Cameras 5/30/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $75,607 9,498
52 The Island President 3/28/2012 Samuel Goldwyn Films PG $75,233 9,451
53 Being Elmo: A Puppeteer's Journey 10/21/2011 Submarine Deluxe PG $66,852 8,398
54 Never Stand Still 5/18/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $63,811 8,016
55 Payback 4/25/2012 Zeitgeist Not Rated $59,736 7,504
56 Side by Side 8/17/2012 TriBeca Films Not Rated $58,825 7,390
57 The Invisible War 6/22/2012 Cinedigm Not Rated $58,492 7,348
58 Surviving Progress 4/6/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $53,953 6,778
59 Beware of Mr. Baker 11/30/2012 SnagFilms Not Rated $53,371 6,704
60 Occupy Unmasked 9/21/2012 Magnet Pictures Not Rated $52,768 6,629
61 An Inconsistent Truth 1/27/2012 Rocky Mountain Pictures PG $52,756 6,627
62 Sing Your Song 1/13/2012 S2BN Not Rated $47,718 5,994
63 The Pruitt-Igoe Myth 1/20/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $44,883 5,638
64 Ballplayer: Pelotero 7/13/2012 Strand Not Rated $44,689 5,614
65 OC87 5/25/2012 Fisher-Klingenstein Films Not Rated $43,583 5,475
66 Crazy Wisdom 11/25/2011 Alive Mind Not Rated $42,841 5,382
67 My Reincarnation 10/28/2011 Long Shot Factory R $41,080 5,160
68 Last Call at the Oasis 5/4/2012 Participant Media PG-13 $40,846 5,131
69 West of Memphis 12/25/2012 Sony Pictures Classics R $39,159 4,919
70 Paul Williams Still Alive 6/1/2012 Abramorama Films PG-13 $38,691 4,860
71 Death by China 8/17/2012 Area 23a Not Rated $38,492 4,835
72 In Film Nist 3/2/2012 Palisades Not Rated $37,706 4,736
73 Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan's Hope 4/6/2012 Wrekin Hill Entertainment PG-13 $34,665 4,354
74 Hit So Hard 4/13/2012 Variance Films Not Rated $34,025 4,274
75 Gregory Crewdson: Brief Encounters 11/2/2012 Zeitgeist Not Rated $33,902 4,259
76 Addiction Incorporated 12/14/2011 Variance Films PG $33,664 4,229
77 Flamenco, Flamenco 11/18/2011 Mongrel Media Not Rated $29,435 3,697
78 Ouwehoeren 8/8/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $29,357 3,688
79 Wagner & Me 12/7/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $29,187 3,666
80 You've Been Trumped 8/3/2012 International Film Circuit Not Rated $28,450 3,574
81 Pink Ribbons, Inc. 6/1/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $26,608 3,342
82 Orchestra of Exiles 10/26/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $24,710 3,104
83 Otter 501 5/11/2012 Paladin Not Rated $24,449 3,071
84 Hellbound? 9/21/2012 Area 23a Not Rated $22,887 2,875
85 56 Up 1/4/2013 First Run Features Not Rated $22,088 2,774
86 Girl Model 9/5/2012 Not Rated $21,154 2,657
87 Carol Channing: Larger Than Life 1/20/2012 Entertainment One PG $20,370 2,559
88 The Whale 9/9/2011 Paladin G $20,092 2,524
89 Radio Unnameable 9/19/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $19,676 2,471
90 Waiting for Lightning 12/7/2012 Samuel Goldwyn Films PG-13 $19,537 2,454
91 How to Grow a Band 4/13/2012 International Film Circuit Not Rated $19,237 2,416
92 Chely Wright: Wish Me Away 6/1/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $18,618 2,338
93 The Revisionaries 10/5/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $18,509 2,325
94 Mansome 5/18/2012 Paladin PG-13 $18,395 2,310
95 Better Than Something: Jay Reatard 3/2/2012 Not Rated $17,401 2,186
96 Inventing Our Life: The Kibbutz Experiment 4/25/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $16,734 2,102
97 This Binary Universe 5/4/2012 Indican Pictures Not Rated $15,875 1,994
98 Avant que mon coeur bascule 11/16/2012 Mongrel Media Not Rated $15,753 1,979
99 Head Games 9/21/2012 Variance Films PG-13 $14,056 1,765
100 Eames: The Architect and the Painter 11/18/2011 First Run Features Not Rated $13,275 1,667
101 The End of Time 12/14/2012 Mongrel Media Not Rated $12,835 1,612
102 Khodorkovsky 11/30/2011 Kino Lorber Not Rated $11,804 1,482
103 China Heavyweight 7/6/2012 Zeitgeist Not Rated $10,550 1,325
104 Tchoupitoulas 12/7/2012 Oscilloscope Pictures Not Rated $10,431 1,310
105 Ultrasuede: In Search of Halston 1/20/2012 TriBeca Films Not Rated $10,357 1,301
106 Happy People: A Year in the Taiga 12/9/2011 Mongrel Media Not Rated $9,523 1,196
107 When the Iron Bird Flies 10/19/2012 Alive Mind Not Rated $9,175 1,152
108 Putin's Kiss 2/17/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $9,144 1,148
109 Decoding Deepak 10/5/2012 SnagFilms Not Rated $9,050 1,136
110 Drei Sterne - Die Koche und die Sterne 9/21/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $8,942 1,123
111 Man on a Mission 1/13/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $8,688 1,091
112 Photographic Memory 10/12/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $7,711 968
113 Last Days Here 3/2/2012 IFC Films Not Rated $7,643 960
114 Bel Borba Aqui 10/3/2012 Abramorama Films Not Rated $7,426 932
115 Only the Young 12/7/2012 Oscilloscope Pictures Not Rated $7,138 896
116 Meine Familie, die Nazis und Ich 11/16/2012 Film Movement Not Rated $6,923 869
117 Dreams of a Life 8/10/2012 Strand Not Rated $6,559 823
118 Windfall 2/3/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $6,504 817
119 The Beat Hotel 3/30/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $6,480 814
120 Booker's Place: A Mississippi Story 4/25/2012 TriBeca Films Not Rated $5,549 697
121 Sushi: The Global Catch 8/3/2012 Alive Mind Not Rated $4,583 575
122 Art is...The Permanent Revolution 3/2/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $4,291 539
123 Yangsi 12/7/2012 Alive Mind Not Rated $3,685 462
124 Let Fury Have the Hour 12/14/2012 CAVU Releasing Not Rated $3,386 425
125 Patagonia Rising 6/8/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $2,064 259
126 Planet of Snail 7/25/2012 Cinema Guild Not Rated $2,011 252
127 Bestiaire 10/19/2012 Zeitgeist Not Rated $1,428 179
128 Fightville 4/6/2012 Mongrel Media Not Rated $1,333 167
129 Jason Becker: Not Dead Yet 12/14/2012 Kino Lorber Not Rated $1,294 162
130 Gottfried Helnwein and the Dreaming Child 11/23/2012 First Run Features Not Rated $601 75
Total Gross of All Movies$132,482,289
Total Tickets Sold16,643,441

Note: This chart ranks movies by the amount they earned during 2012. It includes movies released in previous years that earned money during 2012. For example, a movie released over Thanksgiving in 2010 will most likely earn money in 2010 and 2011. Click on the individual movie to see its total gross over all the years in which it played.

Each box office year ends on the first Sunday of the following year. The next year starts the following day (Monday). For example, the "2004 box office year" ended on Sunday, January 2, 2005.

Inflation-adjusted figures are based ticket sale estimates, and may not be precise due to rounding errors.