Broadway’s Green Day musical, American Idiot, saw a drastic dropoff in ticket sales following the departure of Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong. Armstrong had been guess staring, and the first week after he left the musical, the show saw its weekly box-office grosses fall from a solid $1.3 million to a paltry $395,275 – almost a million dollars’ difference.
That sort of dropoff in ticket sales generally leads to the closing of a Broadway show, the New York Times said. A rep for the show declined to comment.
The Times also notes that several of the other cast members have left the show as their contracts came to an end, including Tony award-winning star John Gallagher Jr. and Michael Esper.
Meanwhile, American Idol Season 1 runner-up Justin Guarini and AFI frontman Davey Havok have recently joined the cast. Havok will play the role that Armstrong played – the ‘seductive rebel’ St. Jimmy.
Armstrong’s presence typically boosted the sales’ grosses by 50 percent. After his first surprise visit to the show back in September 2010, the show played to 93% capacity at the theater and grossed $1.1 million in ticket sales. When Armstrong wasn’t there, the show made a mere $600,000 in ticket sales; again, a significant difference.
I have to wonder if AFI’s Havok’s appearance will make any impact on ticket sales, as he is also a widely known singer, although obviously not nearly as popular as Armstrong seems to be.