Plenty of films earned boatloads of money this year. The Lion King, Avengers: Endgame, Toy Story 4, and many others made over a billion dollars worldwide. However, plenty of movies also faced hardships at the theaters this year. Here are the biggest box office bombs of 2019 – so far!
While Lionsgate had high hopes for Hellboy, behind-the-scenes drama ultimately led to a film that made little sense. Before its release, Lionsgate, the distributor, hoped for a $25 million opening. Then the reviews came out. Many called the film “nearly unwatchable,” and the 17% Hellboy earned on RottenTomatoes scared off most of the potential audience. Afterward, the behind-the-scenes drama spilled out into the open, with cinematographer Sam McCurdy discussing his unfair firing and producers fighting on Twitter.
All led to a horrible opening for Hellboy, which earned just over $12 million over its first weekend. That’s less than half of what the studio original predicted. Over its entire run, Hellboy made less than $45 million, against a $50 million budget.
Just like Lionsgate and Hellboy, Walt Disney Studios expected Dark Phoenix to earn far more than it did. And, after all, why wouldn’t they? The film is part of an incredibly successful franchise, X-Men, and features an all-star cast. Sophie Turner, fresh off of Game of Thrones, leads, with fan favorites like Jennifer Lawrence and James McAvoy. Feeling confident, Disney sunk over $200 million into Dark Phoenix. Including theater fees, backend pay, and marketing, experts said the company needed to make at least $375 million to breakeven.
Unfortunately, that did not happen. Even during production, Dinsey could tell something wasn’t right. The company requested reshoots, pushing back the release date twice, before finally landing on June of this year. However, none of it helped. Dark Phoenix opened to just under $30 million on its opening weekend, the worst opening in X-Men history. While many fans enjoyed the film, Disney still lost out, earning just $255 million from the movie.
Like all the box office bombs of 2019, Charlie’s Angles seemed like a sure bet. Based on a famous television series? Check. Amazing cast, featuring Kristen Stewart, Naomi Scott, and Ella Balinska? Check. Best of all, actress-turned-star-director Elizabeth Banks led the entire project! Sony felt so confident that they pitched the film as the fist in a long franchise. Those ideas are all but dust now, as Charlie’s Angels only made $8 million in its opening weekend. Today, its worldwide total sits at $55 million, against a $48 million budget.
Banks made the situation even worse during an interview on opening weekend. “If this movie doesn’t make money, it reinforces a stereotype in Hollywood that men don’t go see women do action movies,” she stated. Yet, online users were quick to mention that sexism wasn’t the case for the flop, pointing to films like Captain Marvel that did incredibly well at the box office this year. “Elizabeth Banks is so talented, but she is saying such idiotic things. Charlie’s Angels will flop not because men don’t want to see it, but because the marketing is so atrocious NOBODY wants to see it,” one commentator said.
Terminator: Dark Fate
While plenty of franchises did well this year, Terminator: Dark Fate did not. Like other big flops, the newest entry in the ’80s franchise received rewrites, reshoots, and multiple release date pushbacks. Still, all these bandaids could not stop the bleeding. When the new Terminator film opened to horrible reviews, audiences stayed away. Even the return of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hamilton could not bring the viewers in. Ultimately, Terminator: Dark Fate only opened to a little over $29 million, against a $200 million budget.
However, remember, these are the biggest box office bombs of 2019 so far. There are still a few movies to come out during the holiday season, and they might lop just as hard as these movies!