The people that bought a ticket to these movies that flopped didn't know it, but their ticket was also valid for a one-way trip to Turkeytown. And not the good kind of Turkey, the one that gives you a food-baby at Thanksgiving. For a lot of these movies that flopped it was a surprise, as they seemed to have everything going for them. When push came to shove however, their box office results gave them a nice old shove off a cliff and into the sea, where they floated so far that not even big name stars with impressive abs could swim out and save them. Read on and find out which movies took a dive into oceans of debt.
1 John Carter (2012)
I'm pretty sad that this was one of the movies that flopped. With director Andrew Stanton, who had all the Toy Story Films, A Bug's Life, Finding Nemo and Wall-E as credits on his resume, as well as rising star Taylor Kitsch, this film based on Edgar Rice Burrough's classic Barsoom series should have done well, but it failed worse than I did in my first chemistry test (0 out of 20!). The budget was a massive $250 million but it only made $284 million - a tiny sliver of revenue for a huge three-year project. Though Kitsch and others on the film have expressed distant interest in a sequel, it continues to be postponed while the original team make other films (i.e. Stanton is making Finding Dory, and Kitsch will only star if he directs). I loved this film, but we must all hold hands now, and silently admit that it's more likely we will land on Mars for real before we see John Carter of Mars on our screens again. *sigh*
2 The Fifth Estate (2013)
Next to flatline is The Fifth Estate, a film about Wikileaks and the highly controversial Julian Assange. Not even Benedict Cumberbatch, golden boy of Star Trek and Sherlock fame, could save this ship from going down, down, down in box office revenue. With a budget of $28 million, it only made about $6 million. Wikileaks and freedom of information were very topical upon release, and the film was directed by the Oscar-winner Bill Condon, but it wasn't enough. Don't worry, Benedict, not even Sherlock himself would have deduced that this one would fail.
3 Mars Needs Moms (2011)
If failed films had a football team, Mars Needs Moms would be their mascot. Despite an obviously genius tagline ("Mom needs a little space"), this film about realizing the importance of family crashed down to earth with the force of a thousand suns - no exaggeration. It's supposed to be the biggest box office bomb to date, making only $39 million on a budget of $150 million. It pretty much signaled the end for Robert Zemeckis' animation studio, ImageMovers Digital. And he's the guy who made the Back To The Future films. Yeah. Let that sink in.
4 Speed Racer (2008)
Speed Racer was based on a hugely popular Japanese anime and manga series, and should have been able to coast through on a pre-existing fan base. No such luck, as it only made back $93 million of its original $120 million dollar budget. While not as dismally under-budget as other flops, it certainly didn't make the grade, and promptly leapt into discount bins across the country.
5 R.I.P.D (2013)
Based on a comic book about the 'Rest In Peace Department' - an otherworldly police force who purge undead stowaways from the land of the living - this film was dead in the water within weeks of release. My brother was waiting for it to come out, but it never even screened in his city. Released to sate the thirst of Men in Black and Ghostbusters fans, it left them both parched. Critics panned it and audiences followed, leading the $130 million dollar project to a truly ghoulish $78 million and an early grave.
6 Sahara (2005)
The filmmakers sent Sahara out into the vast desert of Hollywood, and it did not survive. There are varying estimates as to exactly how much mula this action-comedy adventure lost; but with the lowest at $40 million and the highest at $80 million, one thing's for sure - the studio execs may as well have scattered their cash to the four desert winds. Not even a perennially shirtless Matthew McConaughey saved this film from wondering in the wastelands.
7 The Legend of Bagger Vance (2000)
Although this movie featured previous box office hit actors such as Matt Damon, Will Smith, and Charlize Theron it still didn't rake in as much as everyone hoped. The movie is about a a promising golfer that gives up on golfing after being traumatized in WWI. Matt Damon's character gets help from a magical man who helps him come to grips with his demons (Will Smith). Although they made about $60 million making this movie, they only made about $30 million at the box office.
8 White House down (2013)
Channing Tatum is in it so it must have done well right? Wrong. This movie lost over $11 million! That may not seem like too much, but everyone thought this movie went so well. So what went wrong? Speculation says that this movie didn't do so well because it came out so shortly after Olympus Has Fallen which was so similar that people just didn't want to go see the same movie twice in such a short period of time.
9 The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones (2013)
After the success of so many YA novels being turned into movies, you'd think this one would have had a better chance at success. With movies like Twilight and The Hunger Games being hits it seemed almost guaranteed that this would be the next hot movie series. Instead, this movie lost over $20 million after its release which is probably by it hasn't be 100% confirmed whether or not a second movie is to be expected.
10 Catwoman (2004)
Well, this one is quite the surprise! Although this movie was a box office flop, losing about $60 million, fans seem to have taken to it. Of course for many Michelle Pfeiffer was the the Catwoman they would have liked to see get her own movie, but instead Halle Berry got the part. Apparently this didn't appeal to audiences since it only made about $40 million compared to the estimated $100 million it cost to make.
11 Paranoia (2013)
And last but not least, Paranoia. Despite the title, no one seemed that worried about this film tanking. But it did. It tanked big time. Hollywood heavy-weights Gary Oldman and Harrison Ford were big business rivals in this thriller that Time Out New York called "borderline unwatchable". I mean, they had Hemsworth and Han Solo in the mix and it still didn't sway audiences. Earning only $13.5 million of its $35 million production cost - now that's a paddlin'.
While it's true that these movies made less money than an off-key busker, it doesn't mean they were totally bad. Hollywood may have virtually disowned them, but hey, Hollywood's a bit of a cow. I own a few of them - they're just a bit of fun to cheer you up and entertain you. They didn't do well at the box office, but many of them do well on our little silver screens at home. And there they shall live on, in the hope of becoming cult classics that one day get rebooted with new leads that haven't even been born yet...
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