5 Reasons Summer Blockbuster Movies Are Failing at the Box Office

Published 2 years ago by , Updated August 9th, 2013 at 12:13 pm, This is a list post.

5 Reasons Summer Blockbuster Movies Are Failing at the Box Office

Battleship Box OfficeLately, it's becoming increasingly difficult for summer blockbusters to make a splash at the box office. What used to be three months of memorable blockbuster moviegoing, the modern summer film season hasn't just become longer (starting in late April and running through August), we're also seeing an increased number of high profile releases vying for box office dollars week to week. Therefore, it's more important than ever that any individual film makes a big splash in its opening weekend - or be doomed to obscurity as the next round of contenders come into the multiplex.2013 has been especially rough - with several tentpole blockbusters failing to gain traction with critics, and worse yet, audiences. Films on the list include Disney's The Lone Ranger, Columbia Pictures' After Earth, and Universal Pictures' R.I.P.D. which will be lucky to make back half of its $100 million+ budget. Considering blockbusters help provide revenue for smaller art-house films and mid-level studio productions, costly box office bombs can have a serious impact on the upcoming film slate.In order to prevent further costly studio misfires, we've put together a list of 5 Reasons Summer Blockbuster Movies Are Failing at the Box Office. Of course the list is not all-inclusive, so once you've had a chance to read our reasons, share your thoughts in the comments.

Too Many Summer Releases

Summer 2013 Box Office Number 1sThe summer film slate, which used to be bookended within the actual summer season (when kids were out of school), has become bloated and over-stuffed. Beginning in late spring and tapering off throughout August, at least one major release punctuates every single box office week - with many weeks now seeing multiple films battling for box office revenue. As a result, plenty of quality (along with a fair share of not-so-great) films are falling through the cracks, and there's less incentive for viewers to return for repeat viewings.Opening weekend has always been a strong indicator of which films are going to turn a profit and which ones are going to have trouble earning back their budgets. However, in a lot of cases, a major factor in box office success is a film's staying power - fueled by casual moviegoers responding to word of mouth along with second (and third) viewings by established fans. In order to secure over a $1 billion total haul ($500 million domestically), The Dark Knight was number 1 at the box office for four consecutive weeks back in 2008. Iron Man 3 only managed to hold the number 1 crown for two weeks, before another major tentpole film, Star Trek Into Darkness, took the top spot. Fun fact: the following week, Star Trek Into Darkness came in at number 3, bested by both Fast & Furious 6 and The Hangover, Part 3 (Iron Man 3 was number 5 at that point - four weeks after release).As a result, studios would benefit from spacing out releases - or outright bumping major films that aren't summer season worthy into the fall, winter, or even spring. As it is, the release slate is cannibalizing - stifling potential longterm successes and outright killing-off films that are more difficult to market.

Too Much CGI Not Enough Substance

RIPD Box OfficeFor many years, summer blockbusters have been synonymous with epic, over-the-top, CGI spectacle - driving films like The Avengers on to over $1.5 billion at the global box office. However, as CGI effects have become increasingly less expensive to produce, many studios have fallen into the habit of relying heavily on eye-popping visuals rather than engaging stories and characters to get people in the seats.There's no doubt that memorable action set-pieces and larger-than-life creatures can be a major draw for moviegoers (sometimes it's just fun to be wowed), but with many competing CGI-heavy films in theaters, epic visual effects aren't always enough anymore. Much of the marketing for R.I.P.D. attempted to sell the film on its whacky odd couple setup (with a paranormal twist) along with a host of digital monsters. In spite of a $130 million budget, audiences mostly ignored the film, dismissing the premise and the CGI action as a less-inspired version of Men in Black - one that wasn't worth dishing out money at the box office. Taking the previous page into account, R.I.P.D.'s heavy reliance on special effects were never going to be enough to compete with RED 2 and The Conjuring, not to mention holdovers like Pacific Rim and Despicable Me 2, in a summer movie spot.Even after solid reviews, the muddled ticket sales and subsequent second week falloff for Pacific Rim shows that casual audiences are more discerning about which CGI blockbusters they'll support in theaters - meaning that even giant robots and monsters are not enough to guarantee solid studio profits.

Inflated Film Budgets

After Earth Box OfficePart of the box office bomb dilemma occurs long before a film is released - when overly anxious executives green light a movie and provide directors with a ridiculously high budget. Admittedly, you've got to spend money to make money, so it's understandable that producers invest outrageous bucks in big name stars and expensive CGI effects to help give their project the best chance at success.Sometimes it works: last year's risky Snow White and the Huntsman made almost $400 million globally on a reported $170 million budget; but other times it doesn't, like with After Earth, which only made $60 million domestically on a $130 million budget. After Earth ultimately earned back its production costs through international ticket sales (bringing in a total of $235 million) but it's still hard to determine where that original $130 million was even spent in the first place. In spite of a few slick CGI sequences, After Earth wasn't particularly grand in scale - meaning that, with careful planning, the studio and director M. Night Shyamalan could have probably reined in the spending without negatively impacting the production (since the final film was still panned by critics and most moviegoers).Many filmmakers and executives put the cart before the horse - assuming that bigger is better. While big-budgeted movies, fueled by an expensive lead and over-the-top visuals set pieces, might make for good pre-release marketing. Once the movie is out, it has to be able stand in the court of public opinion (as mentioned, high production values and recognizable stars aren't a guaranteed formula for box office success). Taking a more modest approach to pre-production - i.e. not trying to turn every script into a tentpole blockbuster - could lower the cost of certain film budgets and deliver more balanced (and better quality) movie experiences overall.

Not With the Times

Lone Ranger Box OfficeBrand recognition helps drive viewers to movies: thirteen out of the top fifteen worldwide grossing films of all time (unadjusted for inflation) are either adaptations or sequels. Only two entries are entirely original (Avatar and Titanic), indicating that casual viewers are eager to support new installments in established franchises or big screen adaptations of popular book series, among other familiar properties. In fact, despite strong critical support and positive word of mouth, Inception only comes in at number thirty-six on that list - suggesting that many moviegoers respond to branding and name recognition over original (and as a result unknown) movie experiences.It's no wonder that studios are always on the prowl for a new comic book to adapt, a new toy line to resurrect, or a new young adult readership to exploit. That said, for every Iron Man, Transformers, or Twilight, there's a franchise bomb waiting to happen (Green Hornet, Battleship, or Beautiful Creatures). For that reason, not every established IP is going to mean big box office dollars.In the last two years, Disney produced two highly publicized bombs based on known characters (John Carter and The Lone Ranger) - both of which cost over $200 million to produce. On paper, adaptations of either property might have sounded like a good idea (John Carter even secured decent reviews) but their flat box office returns indicate that neither brand was as strong as studio heads assumed. Instead of committing a nine-figure budget to a proposed movie, based predominantly on branding and merchandising potential, Hollywood needs to adjust (especially considering that overstuffed summer movie slate) and show a little more restraint. Executives would benefit from becoming more selective (and a little less naive) regarding which properties will compete at the modern movie theater - or, at the very least, which ones can actually make good on a $100 million+ budget.

3D Burnout

The Wolverine 3D Box OfficeEver since Avatar showed how much extra money can be made through added 3D ticket pricing, studios have been pushing unnecessary 3D upgrades onto films that would have been just as good (or even better) in 2D. Previously, we've addressed the biggest misconceptions about 3D, and while the quality of 3D post-conversion has improved (The Avengers) along with a filmmaker's ability to do something interesting with the premium format (Life of Pi), plenty of 3D films do not deliver on the additional investment by consumers. For years, studios have been able to mitigate expected losses on a potential box office underperformer by adding post-conversion 3D - under the assumption that they'll make more money in 3D surcharges than they will be paying to have the film post-converted (increasing their overall net revenue).However, duped by a number of underwhelming 3D experiences, coupled with the already high cost of movie tickets (and concessions), moviegoers are becoming more selective about which films are worth the cost of 3D pricing and which ones will be just fine in 2D. As a result, certain movies are actually losing money on 3D production costs (whether post conversion or native 3D filmmaking), making a potential box office bomb even more costly - should moviegoers overwhelmingly opt for 2D viewings of a film that's already struggling to find an audience (and box office dollars).It's unlikely that 3D filmmaking is going anywhere but there's no doubt that certain moviegoers are beginning to experience 3D fatigue - meaning that, moving forward, there's a greater burden on studios to make sincere decisions about which movies will deliver worthwhile return on 3D investment for both the studio and the consumer.

Conclusion: Be Pro-Moviegoer

Pacific Rim Box OfficeOf course, the biggest box office challenge facing movie studios is getting potential viewers to leave the comfort of their home theater in favor of seeing a film on the big screen. As mentioned, a trip to the multiplex is more costly than ever - and most industry insiders expect prices to rise (not fall) in the coming years. Certain theater chains have been able to incentivize audiences with in-theater food service, premium seating (such as D-Box), as well as premiere formats (RPX and IMAX, among others). However, as HD consumer electronics, syncing with at-home services like Netflix and RedBox, are now able to provide a reasonable substitute for certain theater experiences, it's easy to understand why many film lovers are holding-off on an expensive trip to the theater - and becoming more choosey about which films they will spring to see on the big screen. Needless to say, with an increasing number of box office bombs over the last few years, studios cannot afford to have fewer and fewer people attending films in theaters.Of course, the primary way that studios can combat the stay-at-home trend is to become more consumer-friendly. Instead of raising ticket prices, slapping on unneeded 3D conversions, or wasting money on nine-figure franchise tentpole flicks (that no one asked for), producers and distributors need to up their game and deliver films that audiences are willing to invest in - and can't wait to see.Again, our list is not all-inclusive, so be sure to share your thoughts in the comments.___Follow me on Twitter @benkendrick for future reviews and editorials, as well as movie, TV, and gaming news.
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  1. There’s only ONE reason why movies like “After Earth” , “The Lone Ranger” and “RIPD” flopped;

    They all SUCKED.

    • You beat me to it.

    • I can’t agree with you more. Is it that hard for companies to realize that their movies just aren’t good? When I watched The Lone Ranger, I was thinking of a million ways the film could’ve been so much better.

      Not everyone likes Christoper Nolan, and I understand that, but he’s one of the directors in my opinion that really gets how to make an intriguing, insightful movie experience. His movies are so well done.

      Plain and simple, for a movie to be good, it really has to be well-written and well-thought-out. Good acting also never hurts. As for audience recognition, movie companies can go with big-name actors or big-name franchises. Either of those will draw in a crowd.

    • While the author had to be a bit more diplomatic than that, I was expecting….”because the script HAS to be……GOOD” to be at the top of the list.

      If movie reviewers are going to dis a movie universally, people aren’t going to want to pay their hard earned money to see something that is a potential waste of money for them.

      We live in a much more informed and connected society now a days so it’s much more difficult to hide a bad script and hope people will go see it just because it has brand name recognition.

      As an example…..I like the Lone Ranger but never liked the direction this version was taking so I voiced my opinion by not seeing it.

    • +9000

    • I totally agree, all 3 were crap

    • Then why didn’t Man of Steel flop?

      • Man of Steel DID NOT flop. It made 650 million worldwide. Sure that’s not a runaway success, but it’s damn good, especially taking into account how overpopulated this summer was.

        • No, I asked why DIDN’T Man of Steel flop. If the only factor causing a film to flop is sucking, as Kryptonic theorized, then Man of Steel would have flopped hard. This shows that there must be other factors involved in causing a flop such as lack of a recognized franchise, not enough product tie-ins, not enough CGI, ect.

          • That’s just your opinion that MoS sucked. I, and millions of others., strongly disagree with you.

            • It’s not just my opinion. Most of the people I’ve spoken to don’t like it and it’s certified “Rotten” on RT.

    • Whether a movie “sucked” or not doesn’t matter. The three movies you listed didn’t conform to a state you hold up as the norm and they failed to meet their immediate financial goals, so you feel justified in denigrating them. I’ll list three more films which many have said failed to meet the perceived norms of its “fans”: Iron Man 3, Man of Steel and Star Trek Into Darkness. We can say at the very least that these films have done well enough to justify sequels, so they are demonstrable successes.

      Does a movie deserve accolades and sequels because it not only DIDN’T suck, it was beloved by its fans? It doesn’t matter. Nobody gets what they deserve, only what they can negotiate. These tentpoles need to make three times their negative costs first before they can see a margin of profit in the long run (home video and other ancillaries). So a film unpopular at the box office can still turn a nice profit in the months ahead.

      The only crime of After Earth, Lone Ranger and RIPD is that they won’t hit their financial targets RIGHT AWAY, not because they didn’t meet your approval. Some of you think Del Toro should do another Pac Rim. You better start buying a lot of its Blu Ray copies and hope he stops taking six-year breaks between films.

  2. I’m not sure 3D is on a burnout just yet; it seems to me that the technology is here to stay, no matter how gimmicky some filmmakers insist on making it. That’s to be blamed on them, not the technology itself.

    In this respect, I find myself agreeing with Kryptonic above, if in less strongly-worded fashion: most of this year’s summer blockbusters were just, well, not all that good. Here’s hoping for better scripts next year.

    • There have been some incredible 3D movies in recent years. The problem is that most audiences (like myself) only go to three or four 3D movies a year, because they are so expensive. And considering about a third of the movies in a year have 3D now, it’s still not enough to get audiences to go see them.

  3. 2 words:

    More Batman

    Seriously though, the best out of those suggestions is smarter release dates.

    If you think your movie is a summer blockbuster, you might want to release it right before summer so you don’t compete with all the other “blockbusters”.

    Look at all the Iron Man movies, first week of May. Even The Avengers was released the first week of May… coincidence?

    I think Man of Steel would have done better had it been released earlier. November/December also seems like a good release window, less blockbusters come out during that time and people love to watch movies during vacation season.

    • Despite my negative feelings about Man of Steel, I do agree with you. Most of these films are better off being released at Thanksgiving, Christmas, Or just in the spring, such as March, April, and May.

      Star Trek and MOS would have been better off as a Christmas Release. Wolverine could have dominated the Thanksgiving box office. Lone Ranger should have been a Christmas Release. But I’m kinda leaning towards the Thanksgiving.

      After Earth and Smurfs 2 should never have been made anyways. -.-

      • Thor could very well end up being one of the top 3 movies at the box office this year, because of being released in November. I honestly don’t see that one competing with anything else.

    • You’re definitely right about smarter release dates, but I think it was a smart move for WB/DC to release Man of Steel on Father’s Day weekend. I work at a movie theatre, and believe me, that movie drew in a huge crowd on Father’s Day.

    • I personally think studios should release sure-fire sequels during the off-peak months (like what Fox is doing with the “Fantastic 4″ reboot in March ’15 and Disney with “Captain America 2″ in April ’14). Universal did a smart thing by moving the “Fast & Furious” franchise to April when it started fizzling, then moved back to summer when it gained popularity again.

      I’m not saying all franchises do that, but at least summertime wouldn’t be as crowded like this year’s. I think the “Superman/Batman” movie could kill it in early April 2015, since there’s virtually NO films slated for that time yet. Summer 2015 is getting crowded already.

  4. Bad writing, bad acting, bad directing.

    Seems like the Writers Strike never ended.

    • Agree with this. I think it’s a matter of substance for me… if I pay the 10$ ticket price, I want to see a movie that’ll interest me, not a popcorn flick. As I get older I find myself liking independents more, and hoping that the “mainstream” will catch up…

      • Yeah a good indie flick is sooo much more worthwhile for me than an empty, poorly written, CGI saturated mess.

  5. They just need to spread out these blockbusters more throughout the year instead of pitting them all in the summer. Thor and the Hobbit are coming out in the fall and they’ll be big successes. Spread them out.

  6. The biggest reason IMO is that the movies just aren’t good – many of them don’t deserve to succeed. They were either bad ideas to start with, or not very well-made, especially with regard to the screenplay. A genuinely good film with competent marketing has a good chance of doing well.

    Spreading the blockbusters out over the year maybe makes sense. Things can be kinda slow during the winter, with not as many options for viewers.

    I almost never choose to see anything in 3D. I go to a 2D showing instead. I guess that it comes down to how many 3D tickets / % it takes to make back the production costs. But they aren’t making much back on me.

    • Additionally: I have no doubt that in many cases, a superior film could have been made on a lower budget. They are spending too much money on the wrong things, in a weird turn on the idea of playing it safe.

      If someone in Hollywood *really* wants to get more for their money, they need to divorce their mind from the same-old, same-old and look pragmatically at how to make attractive films without wasting millions on broken tricks.

      And if you want to really make a splash with 3D, make a film that is worth it. Avatar did not make $2.7B by being a post converted gimmick.

  7. The Dark Knight was in theaters in 2008, not 2009.

    • Whoops, typo. Fixed. Thanks!

  8. It can be prevented by
    1. Better marketing (Pacific Rim should have been a blockbuster)
    2. Better scripts
    3. Making characters the audience like and care about
    4. Listen to fans (give them what they want to an extent, You still have to make a profit)
    5. Try to at least semi respect source material
    6. Action with a good story

    • agree with the better marketing. They seem to spend so much money on marketing were that money could have been used on the movie for better cgi effects or story telling.

    • I agree with listening to the fans. It doesn’t make any difference for the general public anyway.

    • Same with #5. Doesn’t make any difference for the audience.

      • It upsets and pains me to face reality and say your right.
        But I can always hope.

    • I noticed you praised ‘Pacific Rim’ and then demanded “better scripts” from Hollywood in the very next sentence. Could I ask what, in your mind, would qualify as “better” scripts? More robots? More monsters? Less plot and character development? Cheesier dialogue?

      • Better character development. The Fast and furious franchise is already planning their 8th movie because they have an audience that like the characters and care about them, so their loyal to their franchise.

  9. We keep pointing out the negative things about the movie industry yeah 3D Is a burnout but people it’s nothing but a trend. Personally I enjoy the real blockbusters put together and In many way the movie industry has got way better after 2008 vs what it was in 2005 on down.

  10. It is the cost per seat. You hit the nail on the head. A family of 4 can drop nearly $80 for a premium IMAX experience and then there is the cost of food and drink, rasing the tab to well north of $100. Pro-sports areeven worse, hense the decline in ticket sales to BAseball, basketball and even football in some cities. The average working class family just does not have the $$ for all of these events any more. Which brings up the issue of the “event” movie. The big ones are now being copied and duplicated, with so much competition, they all start to blend together. Perhaps the future, with large screen TV and the internet will be to display these films during the opening couple of weeks on a high priced pay-per view format is what I fear.

  11. A major reason is the explosion of alternate entertainment options at our disposal. People would rather spend 8 bucks a month on Netflix and watch days of engaging, original story lines being created for TV (Mad Men, Breaking Bad, etc), than have their intelligence insulted with rebooted, rehashed properties, CGI overload, and fart jokes.

    This very article lends credence to the idea that the discussion of dollars, release competition, franchise potential (i.e. the business end) now serves as its own form of entertainment for movie enthusiasts, to the point of being discussed more than the films themselves (because really, there isn’t much new to be said of the formula, is there?)

    It’s certainly fine to enjoy a fun film, but during the summer, moviegoers are forced to do this each week, or choose to stay home. Hopefully more people vote with their wallets, and support interesting (and dare I suggest, foreign) films instead.

  12. all people want truthfully speaking is more Star Wars, Avatar and Avengers. Oh and maybe Titanic in the U.S. John Q. Public and Sally May like keeping their standards low.

  13. For me it’s definitely the 3D thing. I’d be sitting in the theater much more often, if they wouldn’t ruin my experience with those dark 3D glasses all the time, while asking 40% more money from me for letting them ruin my experience. At the very least they could provide a 2D version along with the 3D version, but that is almost never the case in my region. It’s 3D or nothing. Fine, then “nothing” it is. I’ll wait for the Blu-ray…

    • p.s.: the summer of 2015 will be crazy. I think there are more high caliber blockbusters set for that year than ever before…

  14. personally i only pick anywhere from 12 to 15 movies a year to watch.
    here are other reasons these movies many have failed

    AFTEREARTH- this movie was based on a will smith concept then he has
    one of his brother in laws help write it and casts his son as the lead
    and him as a limp father, and add poor m night shaymalan, and add the fact
    the everyone starts sticking their nose and ideas in this movie and you
    can already tell this movie was going to fail. i said as much before it was

    THE LONE RANGER- should have been made on a lesser budger (75 million)
    and less ambition. nevertheless both depp and hammer were funny in this
    movie, turned out to be fun experience. but really a western with a 200 million dollar price tag, they should have learned from wild wild west.

    RIPD- ryan reynolds name is becoming box office poison to huge budget films and to cap it off he does not care for fans. translation-another
    bomb on his belt buckle.

  15. Sometimes I don’t understand what a movie that bombed is. It seems that movies that make little to no money at the box office win awards and some movies make a shitload of money but get ripped by the critics & audiences. How about if a big budget movie makes no money but critics & audiences like it. There are so many factors when it comes to watching a new movie, I guess its just your point of view. In the end its about the money and that’s what drives sequels. I actually really liked John Carter & Battleship I haven’t seen the other bombs this year but i plan on it.

    • Maybe the problem is that it’s actually “only” about the money and it shows… They can still pursue the money but maybe they could be more subtle about it?

  16. I went and saw Pacific Rim again in 3D, only because I wanted to see it on IMAX (or lieMax [just a big screen]).

    I’ve heard all this talk that 3D conversion is getting to be so good, it’s just as good as being filmed in 3D now, Blah, Blah… It’s not anywhere near as good. It’s a shame they are telling people that. Real 3D, used well, is a reason to go to the theater rather than stay at home. They’re going to turn people off to it by advertising that it’s all the same. But that’s what they are doing.

  17. Marketing would be it for me. I love movies and try to see as many as possible but if I’m not reminded that a movie is coming out soon then most likely it will slip my mind. Most recently 2 Guns was a movie I really wanted to see, however I never really saw a trailer for it in theaters or on TV. With so many blockbusters out there it is easy for some to be forgotten.

  18. I COMPLETELY agree with everything in this article. You sir have nailed the problems that these mega-budgeted films are experiencing perfectly.

    Time after time audiences surprise everyone with out of left field successful films that don’t play to the incessant use of special effects nor are they incredibly costly. Ted, District 9, The Conjuring and even fantasy films like the Underworld series, are made with extremely modest budgets, yet don’t rely heavily on CGI and out of this world special effects but rather solid acting, a unique take on a familiar story or theme. I also want to point out that even though I think having something that is “familiar” to an audience does make a movie much more likely to succeed at the box office, it is not ONLY because a “story” is familiar should a studio make that the reason to green light a movie. That “familiarity” does not ALWAYS need to come from a book or previous movie. District 9’s themes of xenophobia was the “familiar’ connection that people gravitated to which made it successful. Similarly with the Conjuring which spent a good 45 minutes reminding people why they are afraid of the dark and playing upon the familiar themes of restless souls. I understand the studio’s strategies but it is short sighted and I hope they take a closer look at the successful movies that went against the grain of the big tent pole films and figure out how to make more of them.

    Bravo on this article!

  19. “producers and distributors need to up their game and deliver films that audiences are willing to invest in – and can’t wait to see.”

    Couldn’t have said it better myself. Hollywood needs to quit making safe-bets like lazy sequels, below average kids flicks, and slapped together wannabe franchise starters. They need to take a step back and focus more on quality than huge budgets and special effects.

  20. I can answer that easily.
    they’re too bloody many and it costs to much.

    Every summer we get between six and eight huge films and most of us who cant afford to go see them all have to pick which one we really want to see and leave the rest until a following month or when they come out on DVD/BLU RAY. at least that’s what I think.

    Maybe do a year when we have like three or four released and some studios break from tradition and release some good small films that are not dull and boring love stories (not that im insulting the people who like those films)

  21. Reason 1) Probably the most deciding factor – poor quality movies. Too much effort is being put into the visual (CGI, shaky – cam, super quick editing) and not enough on story and characterization. People may mock the 80s – but they remain the best cinematic era in terms of blockbuster movies.

    Yes the action and effects were at large then, but you also had characters and stories that you could relate to, were more positive and proactive instead of angst ridden, and most importantly left a lasting impression after you walked out of the cinema. Back then blockbusters had a longevity and timelessness that today’s movies don’t – which leads to reason 2.

    2) Lack of originality. Studios are now scared of trying something new that they constantly remake 80s classics hoping that nostalgia will bring success. However the remakes never come close to matching the originals and peole are just sick and tired of the never ending pile of remakes – Point Break, Scarface, Robocop all to come – someone just make them stop.

    3) Downloading / Piracy. Surprisingly not on the list. An issue that will always be there, it goes hand in hand with the other reasons in the article. Why pay high prices for a potentially rubbish post 3D converted movie that isn’t that good, when you can get it for cheaper or free? Out of all reasons this one will never be solved – even if movies are purchased online like music, which I think WILL definitely happen eventually.

    4) End of the A-lister. Lone gone are the days when one actor sells a movie on their own. Back then Stallone and Schwarzenegger could make the likes of Cobra & Commando and watch them top the box office for multiple weeks. Again linking to quality and prices, people want more value for their money. Whilst here are still bankable actors, they need to be in big event franchises now to truly sell. Will Downey Jnr still be able to gross big outside of Avengers, Iron Man & Sherlock Holmes?

    We have to remember that not all movies will succeed. Some amazing films may just not be marketed right, or be released at he wrong time. Ultimately though if they are of a good quality, then the higher chance they will make money than not.

  22. After Man of Steel I was burnt out from seeing big cgi city destroying movies.

  23. I think number one would be decent storytelling. Yes, some people may like watching a CGI fest of robots, aliens, or dead things destroying things but a lot of the public want a decent script as well. It seems lately the sci-fi flicks has been more concentrated on the CGI aspect of the film than the actual script. The 80’s and 90’s seemed to have produced movies which had great CGI(at the time) with a well thought out script. It didn’t matter if it was a sequel, reboot, or original as the majority seemed to have both. I enjoy popcorn flicks every now and then but I mostly have learned to wait for the DVD release it most of them have been all CGI films with average to bad scripts.
    The second thing is the timing of the release. I think most blockbuster films do good around April/May or September/November/December. Also, do the film right the first time that way it doesn’t get delayed.
    The 3D thing doesn’t bother me as much but if a movie is going to do 3D, at least film it in 3D. Also not every film needs to be in 3D. Some films would be nice to have it and some films in 3D are just a waste

  24. I will be the one who decides if a movie is a hit or a bomb. People’s opinions count for nothing.

  25. I completely agree. Mostly because of the high prices I’m forced to pick-and-choose what moves I see. Those that aren’t a “must see” will almost likely be viewed at-home on my home theater with the added bonus of better food at a far cheaper price. 😉

  26. I think that after the avengers and dark knight rises general movie audiences expectations became high and non of the blockbusters of this year were that good for multiple viewings. On top of that going to the cinema is expensive add onto that the 3d then it gets waaaaaaay expensive. So the general movie audience is going to save their money on an ‘event’ movie. the only reason Iron man did those crazy numbers is because one year later people still talk about avengers so Iron man 3 was kind of an avengers sequel, at least that’s what the general audience thought.We are living in a post-avengers world Hollywood needs to up their game or else they gonna be loosing big bucks

  27. I think that after the avengers and dark knight rises general movie audiences expectations became high and none of the blockbusters of this year were that good for multiple viewings. On top of that going to the cinema is expensive add onto that the 3d then it gets waaaaaaay expensive. So the general movie audience is going to save their money on an ‘event’ movie. the only reason Iron man did those crazy numbers is because one year later people still talk about avengers, so Iron man 3 was kind of an avengers sequel, at least that’s what the general audience thought.We are living in a post-avengers world, Hollywood needs to up their game or else they gonna be loosing big bucks

  28. These movies are way too expensive. A movie like The Conjuring easily got it’s money back the first weekend. Then there’s District 9, which was also low budget.

    I can’t see a long run of more SH movies. Eventually general audience will tire of them, and there are too many. I think they need to figure out a way to make them on lower budgets. They’re will always be a niche market, but that’s never enough to make back money on 100 of millions of dollars for every movie.

    • Not gonna happen imho.

      I have been watching Sci-Fi movies since watching 2001 on TV and they still keep coming out with them and I keep going to see them. Same with horror movies.

      So to say that another genre of movie has no longevity (especially they have been making those also for ever) is folly.

      • “They’re will always be a niche market, but that’s never enough to make back money on 100 of millions of dollars for every movie.”

        There are always every kind genre of movie, but there are definately cycles of when there are few to virtually none, to an overflow, and times when they have huge bugets to times when budgets are slim for most of them.

        I’ll stick by what I said. The budgets are so high that it’s more difficult to make the money back, especially with the ever increasing number with DC, Marvel, Fox, and Sony all in the running. Then there are all the other sci-fi and adventure films outside the SH genre (not even considering all the Star Trek, Avatar, and Star Wars movies already promised).

        Budgets around 200 million are becoming the norm. I’m saying they might have to scale back on a lot of them in order to keep making movies.

        Horror movies have miniscule budgets compared to these SH movies. That’s why they are a constant. They almost always make a profit several times the budget and more. MOS? Not so much. Wolverine? Keep in mind that studios only see some of the box office totals.

        And that you saw 2001 on TV is supposed to mean “what?” I saw it in a theater (albiet ten years after the initial run), and I know it had never been shown on TV at before then. And home video was in it’s infancy.

  29. I agree with all points and to add the increased cost that theaters have reached even to go to a matinee or early bird. This at one time was full price. A lot of people I know are waiting for the 2.5/3 month turnaround on VOD or Netflicks to see these big movies.
    Hollywood better get this fixed or the time at the movies will be a thing of the past.