“Uh, had a slight weapons malfunction. But, uh, everything’s perfectly all right now. We’re fine. We’re all fine here, now, thank you. How are you?”
The Force wasn’t with Solo: A Star Wars Story this weekend, as the Ron Howard directed origin story massively under performed at the box office at what is expected to end at just over $100 million for the four day Memorial Day weekend.
While that would be a great number for most films, it’s terrible for a Star Wars movie.
So what caused Solo to bomb at the box office. It’s probably a number of factors, including stiff competition from other “geek” movies like Deadpool 2 and Disney’s own Avengers: Infinity War, middling reviews, a lack of real buzz about the film, behind-the-scenes drama and “franchise fatigue.”
So there’s that.
According to Disney, they’re looking into the cause of Solo’s failure. Fan backlash alone wouldn’t account for the $50-70 million under-performance, and it seems like the general public really just didn’t care about this film either.
While many other big budget franchises like Pirates of the Caribbean and Transformers can under-perform in the U.S. and recoup money overseas, the Star Wars films are not big in important markets like China.
From The Hollywood Reporter…
“We are all over it, and will spend a lot of time digging into why things happened the way they did. We have a year and a half before Episode IX comes out,” says Disney distribution chief Dave Hollis. “We’ve had so much success. The previous three Star Wars films did $4 billion worth of of BUSINESS at the box office, so it doesn’t feel like saturation is necessarily an issue, but we are still answering all of the questions.”
It seems as if Disney is chalking the failure of Solo up to being an isolated incident, and on the surface they don’t seem too terribly concerned. However, that’s still quite a lot of lost revenue and not a good look for the franchise.
The real test of Star Wars’ staying power will likely be Episode IX, due in 2019. If that film also fails to connect with audiences, Lucasfilm may have to re-evaluate how it handles the franchise going forward.[Source: The Hollywood Reporter]
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