Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows
Budget: $135 million / Domestic Total: $82 million / Worldwide: $245 million
Ah would you look at that, another film on this list which was a worse performing movie that its predecessor. 2014’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles netted just under $500 million, but the poor reviews and negative word of mouth meant that few returned for another outing featuring this iteration of the Heroes in a Half-Shell. Even the appeal of seeing franchise classics like Krang, Bebop, Rocksteady and Casey Jones couldn’t bring in the nostalgic audience, and the film opened to a disappointing $35 million. The biggest telling of the film’s lack of success however comes from its producer Andrew Form, who announced that plans for a third movie were likely to be scrapped despite all the actors signing on for three more movies and Tyler Perry revealing he would become Stockman-Fly in the next film. “For some reason it did not find the audience that the first movie found,” Form told Collider. “And we talk about it all the time, and we tried to figure it out, but we cannot put our finger on what happened. We really can’t.” He added: “I don’t think there’s Turtles 3, but I wouldn’t say there’s never going to be another Turtles movie.”
Jane Got a Gun
Budget: $25 million / Domestic Total: $1.5 million / Worldwide: $3 million
Remember how we noted that The BFG was one of the worst performing movies of Spielberg’s career? Well Jane Got a Gun, a Western starring Natalie Portman, Joel Edgerton and Ewan McGregor is the worst ever wide release for The Weinstein Company. The film had poor projections early on, and didn’t even meet those. Earning just $3 million against a $25 million budget, Jane Got a Gun is another example that the Western is a genre that general audiences are not interested in.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
Budget: $28 million / Domestic Total: $10 million / Worldwide: $16 million
When Seth Grahame-Smith’s book Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was released in 2009, it found a large audience who loved its bizarre premise. It’s 2016 adaptation, however, went the same way as the other adaptation of Grahame-Smith’s work Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter – no one went to see it and it bombed. The film was projected to open to $10 to $12 million but only managed $5 million, placing it behind The Choice and Hail, Caesar!. In total, the film earned just $16 million worldwide against a budget of $28 million.
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
Budget: $20 million / Domestic Total: $9 million / Worldwide: $9.5 million
With the popularity of The Lonely Island and the cult appeal of Andy Samberg, it was a safe bet to spend $20 million on a mockumentary in the same vein as This is Spinal Tap. And even though it was going up against the much bigger Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping was still projected to earn around $7 million on its opening weekend. In the end it earned just $4.6 million from over 3,000 screens. The film did get mostly good reviews, but only earned around $9 million domestically making it a huge box office flop.
Ratchet & Clank
Budget: $20 million / Domestic Total: $8 million / Worldwide: $13 million
Ratchet & Clank was one of four video game releases in 2016 and was the one with the smallest budget. Producer Brad Foxhoven worked closely with Sony and Insomniac Games to make sure they were happy with the adaptation and they even had a video game tie-in that would be released alongside the film. It was a simple idea, and with a small budget of $20 million it seemed almost fool proof. Sadly, some pretty lousy reviews and bad word of mouth meant that Ratchet & Clank only opened to $4 million which placed it in seventh place that weekend. A worldwide total of $13 million means Ratchet & Clank was a box office flop. As everyone likes to point out, the video game movie curse continues (if you ignore the Resident Evil series, Lara Croft: Tomb Raider, Warcraft and The Angry Birds Movie). Speaking of which…
Budget: $125 million / Current Domestic: $22 million / Current Worldwide: $36 million
Perhaps this entry is being a bit presumptuous given its only just been released, but the dreadful opening weekend for video game adaptation Assassin’s Creed is going to hail it as one of the big flops of 2016. As if it wasn’t going to struggle enough being released over the Holiday period, it was going up against animated movie Sing, festive comedy Why Him? and space juggernaut Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. In reality it was never going to compete, but poor reviews won’t have helped. As with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows and Gods of Egypt, this bad box office run could spell the end of a franchise before its even begun – even though it has plans for a trilogy of films. What this means for Ubisoft Motion Pictures future releases – including Watch Dogs, The Division and Splinter Cell – remains to be seen.
Budget: $144 million / Domestic Total: $128 million / Worldwide: $229 million
It’s hard to talk about Paul Feig’s reboot of the Ghostbusters franchise, because what hasn’t been said before? It was hated by a large portion of the Internet before a single frame was shot, it had numerous negative set reports and several Sony insiders called the film a disaster. Prior to its release, Feig said the studio were hoping for around $500 million in order to break even after a big marketing spend, while The Hollywood Reporter claimed it was more like $300 million. It didn’t hit either target. In total, Ghostbusters earned loses of $50 – $70 million. A planned sequel was quietly put on ice while the studio re-evaluated its stance on the franchise, and Feig has been very open in saying Sony have not spoken to him about a follow up. He did say they were waiting for the home entertainment release – where it was renamed Ghostbusters: Answer the Call – but no announcement has been made. One can only assume the Blu-Ray numbers weren’t that good either.
Budget: $10 million / Domestic Total: $3 million / Worldwide: $6 million
If you’re a movie executive, you’ve got to be looking at the Marvel Cinematic Universe and DC Extended Universe and be asking yourself: how do I get a piece of that? The answer, for Mattel at least, seemed simple: Max Steel, an origin story for their 1997 toy line with plans to launch a franchise and sell toys at Christmas. Sadly, the film they got was a terrible disappointment that was given very harsh reviews. “Max Steel is a stillborn, would-be franchise starter, sneaked into multiplexes without advance critic screenings,” wrote The Hollywood Reporter while RogerEbert.com called it “surprisingly bland”. Of all the films on the list, Max Steel has the worst rating of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes. Max Steel was project to earn $5 to $7 million on its opening weekend but it only managed $2. A drop of 69% the following week dropped it off the radar and the film only earned $6 million worldwide when all was said and done. It has been named the biggest box office flop of 2016.