From the animated films of our childhoods to the fast-paced action flicks that we love to enjoy on Friday nights, there’s no shortage of amazing movies to come out of Hollywood. However, despite the home to some of the biggest studios, not every movie that gets made is going to be a blockbuster. In fact, some of them are going to downright stink.
Making a movie isn’t cheap, but producers always hope that their film is going to be the next hit franchise. These movies, though? Well, let’s just say they lost money for their respective studios… to the tune of millions of dollars.
Titan A.E – loss of $100 million
20th Century Fox has quite the reputation for producing some of the biggest blockbusters of our time. That’s why critics were extremely surprised when Titan A.E., which came out in 2000, flopped.
The film had an all-star cast — including Drew Barrymore and Matt Damon — and the animated adventure was expected to be one of the highest grossing films of the year. Despite its $90 million production budget and a huge marketing budget, the movie grossed only $37 million and has lost over $100 million so far.
The Adventures of Pluto Nash – loss of $96 million
The Adventures of Pluto Nash was supposed to be a fun sci-fi/comedy flick with Eddie Murphy in the lead role. He’s a moon-dwelling alien who is robbed at a nightclub and goes on an adventure to find the crooks who stole from him.
The movie even has an epic battle in which he confronts them towards the end of the movie. Warner Bros Studios had huge expectations from this film and pumped over $100 million in production. However, it turned out to be a major dud at the box-office and earned only $7 million.
Jupiter Ascending – loss of $90-$110 million
Lilly and Lana Wachowski, the creators of legendary sci-fi film series The Matrix, were desperate to prove that they could continue making blockbuster hits. They had high expectations on their shoulders and critics expected them to replicate the magic they are so well known for.
The film, Jupiter Ascending, even had an ensemble of superstars including Mila Kunis and Channing Tatum and one of the biggest CGI budgets of 2015. Despite the name, the film hardly took off let alone ascended and created a hole in the studio’s budget of between $90 and $110 million.
Alice Through the Looking Glass – loss of $70 million
Legendary director Tim Burton has quite the reputation when it comes to extravagant budgets. However, most of his films have gone on to achieve enormous success so studios are more than happy to let Burton do his thing.
However, Burton has also had a few flops in his career. His most notable one was Alice Through the Looking Glass which was the sequel to Alice in Wonderland. However, Burton’s creative choices divided opinion and even Johnny Depp couldn’t save the film from losing over $70 million.
Jack the Giant Slayer – loss of $125 million
When New Line Cinema released Jack the Giant Slayer in 2013, it expected fans to warm up to the fairytale movie. As the name suggests, it was based on Jack and the Beanstalk and had Nicholas Hoult in the titular role while Stanley Tucci played the enemy.
Hoult generated quite the publicity for the movie due in part to his previous work in the X-Men movies. Despite director Bryan Singer’s $200 million production budget, the film flopped at the box office and insiders say the studios made a loss of over $125 million.
47 Ronin – loss of $98 million
It’s very unusual for Hollywood studios to give a huge budget to new and unknown directors. When it does happen, it’s bound to generate a lot of publicity. For example, critics were surprised when Universal Studios announced Carl Rinsch as the director of fantasy action flick 47 Ronin.
The film even had internet darling Keanu Reeves in the lead role. However, neither Keanu nor his samurai friends were able to save the film. In fact, it was widely panned by critics and audiences and made a loss of $98 million. Better luck next time Keanu!
The BFG – loss of $100 million
Legendary Hollywood producer and director Steven Spielberg is another one of those names that needs no further introduction. The man behind hits like E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, Jurassic Park, Jaws and Schindler’s List seems to have the Midas Touch when it comes to success at the box office.
It’s no wonder that when THE BFG, adapted from Roald Dahl’s famous novel of the same name, already had high expectations when it was first announced. However, the film was a huge dud when it was released in 2016 and made a loss of over $140 million.
How Do You Know – loss of $85-$118 million
Sony Pictures’ 2010 release How Do You Know had an uphill battle at the box office even before it was released. The studio had spent over $100 million securing Reese Witherspoon and Jack Nicholson for the lead roles.
The film also starred Paul Rudd and Owen Wilson and was directed by James L. Brooks. Executives were sure they had a golden goose on their hands. However, it turns out you also need a good story to make a hit, which the film did not have. It made a loss of between $85 and $118 million.
The Lone Ranger – loss of $100 million
A movie has to be extra bad if even Johnny Depp can’t turn into a hit. Disney’s The Lone Ranger seems to have been plagued by bad luck considering that there were so many injuries on set. In addition, conditions on set were poor and the studio considered scrapping production before going ahead with the film.
In addition to Depp, the film also starred Helena Bonham-Carter and Ruth Wilson. However, the film grossed only $260 million and is reported to have made a loss of over $150 million according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Monster Trucks – loss of $120 million
While 2016 flick Monster Trucks was a hit with many of the franchise’s biggest fans, critics across the board gave this film a very cold reception. It’s one of those films that divided opinion: critics hated it, but fans loved it.
Paramount Pictures spared no expenses when it came to production and even cast Lucas Till and Jane Levy in the lead roles. However, the studio was left with a huge loss to recover and insiders estimate it to be over $120 million.
Delgo – loss of $39 million
Animated flick Delgo is famous for all the wrong reasons. The movie is in fact the lowest grossing animated film of all time. Despite a high-profile cast including Jennifer Love Hewitt, Freddie Prinze Jr and Val Kilmer, the movie was a huge disappointment for fans and critics.
The studio had spent $40 million on production but it didn’t even gross a million dollars when it was released in December 2008. You don’t need to be a math expert to know just how bad that is. We wouldn’t be surprised if audiences asked for a refund.
Fantastic Four – loss of $80-$100 million
When it comes to reboots of cult classics, studios often face an uphill battle. While fans are often delighted to check out a new take on a classic, these films often also have extremely high expectations.
Unfortunately, Fantastic Four just did not live up to everything fans and critics expected from it. Many say it’s because of Fox Studios’ decision to create a cast entirely consisting of newcomers. Even Chris Evans couldn’t save the film. In fact, the movie would go on to lose between $80 and $100 million.
R.I.P.D. – loss of $100-$120 million
Despite Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges’ on-screen chemistry, zombie adventure R.I.P.D. just couldn’t get its viewers as excited. In fact, the movie was widely panned by both critics and audiences. The poorly rated CGI effects, predictable storyline and awkward jokes, in particular, certainly did not help.
Director Robert Schwentke even had a budget of over $130 million. However, the film would gross only $78 million which was a huge loss for Universal Pictures. However, Reynolds has gone on to have several hits since this film, so we guess it’s all okay.
Cowboys and Aliens – loss of $63-$75 million
Cowboys and Aliens is one of those movies that doesn’t leave much to the imagination. The title makes it pretty obvious what it’s all about but if fans were expecting something fun, they were mostly disappointed.
The film even boasted a star-studded cast including Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford and Olivia Wilde. While the film would do much better abroad, it is still considered a dud. While some estimates say it grossed $174 million worldwide against a budget of $163 million, it is estimated to have lost as much as $75 million.
Ben-Hur – loss of $76-$120 million
It is common practice for studios to cast up and coming newcomers in the lead roles for big budget films in order to generate publicity. That’s exactly what the studio was trying to do when they cast Jack Hudson as the lead in this biblical tale.
Unfortunately, Hudson’s performance was hindered by several issues while filming, most notably delays and issues in production. In addition to Hudson, the film also starred Morgan Freeman. The film was rated negatively by both critics and fans and is estimated to have made a loss of over $76 million.
Deepwater Horizon – loss of $60 million
Mark Wahlberg is one of the biggest superstars in Hollywood so it’s no surprise to see his name attached to several blockbusters. However, his casting in 2015 disaster flick Deepwater Horizon alongside Gina Rodriguez and Kate Hudson wasn’t exactly his proudest moment.
The movie would go on to make a loss of a whopping $60 million. While many people say it’s because the movie was released around Oscar season, the film has earned its fair share of positive reviews and has an IMDB score of 7.1/10.
Tomorrowland – loss of $80-$155 million
You’d think that a Disney film with George Clooney in the lead role would be a moneymaker no matter what the acting or plot is like.
In fact, the studio had so much confidence that the total budget for the film is estimated to be around $190 million. Despite a glitzy marketing campaign, the film just didn’t catch on and is estimated to have made a loss of over $80 million. In fact, it only grossed $93 million in North America.
The Promise – loss of $94-$102 million
Making a biopic is never an easy task. In addition to casting, the studio also has to ensure attention to detail while still making the story entertaining. The 2016 flick The Promise is set towards the end of the Ottoman Empire and starred Tom Hollander, James Cromwell, Christian Bale and Oscar Isaac.
While audiences loved the film, critics did not rate it highly and FilmNation Entertainment is estimated to have grossed only $12 million against a budget of over $90 million. Looks like even Christian Bale isn’t always making hits.
Mortal Engines – loss of $174.8 million
After Peter Jackson’s enormous success with the Lord of the Rings franchise, everyone thought he could do nothing wrong. However, even the mighty Peter Jackson has had his fair share of duds. For example, his 2018 post-apocalyptic film Mortal Engines was one of the biggest box office flops of all time.
Despite not having any huge names in its cast, the final cost of production was estimated to be upwards of over $100 million. Many attribute the film’s poor performance to the fact that Philip Reeve’s book series isn’t as popular in North America.
Cutthroat Island – loss of $89 million
Considering just how much money the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise has made, you’d think that its impossible to lose money when you’ve got pirates in your film.
However, Cutthroat Island which came out in 1995 and starred Geena Davis and Matthew Modine would turn out to be a huge disappointment. The film grossed only $10 million against its budget of over $98 million. Many say the film flopped due to a lack of any recognizable names in the cast.
Pan – loss of $130-$150 million
The story of Peter Pan is so popular among both adults and kids that the folks over at Berlanti Productions and Ratpac-Dune Entertainment must have thought Pan was a guaranteed hit. The film starred Hugh Jackman, Rooney Mara and even Amanda Seyfried.
Director Joe Wright is rumored to have had a budget of over $200 million. However, critics found the plot predictable and fans weren’t too amazed by the CGI on the film. It was a huge loss for the studio and is estimated to have made a loss of over $130 million.
Sahara (2005) – loss of $78-$105 million
Movies that are adaptations of popular books always benefit from the enthusiasm of fans who just can’t wait to watch the movie. The studio spared no expense when it came to casting. The movie starred A-listers Matthew McConaughey, William H Macy and Penelope Cruz.
Director Breck Eisner was given a budget of $130 million. However, it was a flop at the box office. It made a loss of between $78 and $105 million. In fact, The Los Angeles Times even listed it as one of the most expensive flops of all time.
John Carter – loss of $200 million
Chances are you probably haven’t heard of sci-fi adventure flick John Carter and that’s because the movie flopped big time. Taylor Kitsch, who was cast to play the lead in the film, played a civil war veteran who somehow ended up on the red planet.
Insiders also say that Disney executives fell out after numerous disagreements with director Andrew Stanton. It’s actually a bit weird because even though they invested over $200 million in the movie, it’s like they wanted it to flop. Interestingly, the studio spent over $100 million in marketing and promotion.
King Arthur: Legend of the Sword – loss of $150 million
The legend of King Arthur is one of those stories that has been part of folklore for a thousand years now. Is it any surprise that studio executives thought it would also make for a great film? On paper, Legend of the Sword had everything going on for itself.
It was directed by Guy Ritchie, while Charlie Hunnan of Sons of Anarchy starred in the lead role. The studio even pumped over $175 million into production and marketing. However, it was released on the same date as other blockbusters which it could not compete with.
Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas – loss of $125 million
Animated flicks, especially the ones based on tried and tested plots, always tend to do very well with families across the world looking for something fun to watch with their kids. No wonder DreamWorks had high hopes from this film.
While some people liked the movie, it was largely panned by critics and audiences. In fact, many were even cringing in their seats and we’re sure they told their friends all about it. DreamWorks ended up losing over $125 million on this movie. Who knew even Sinbad the sailor would flop!
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows – loss of $75 million
DC Comics’ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise is by far one of its most popular ones. It’s impossible not to find these superheroes at toy stores, video game stores and even on television.
However, fans were used to seeing them in their animated form so we imagine they must have been pretty excited to see a more realistic depiction. Unfortunately, many viewers weren’t too fond of the movie which resulted in a loss of over $75 million. The studio even scrapped plans for a third film that was slated to release later.
Power Rangers – loss of $76 million
Like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers was another TV classic that studio executives thought was guaranteed to make it big at the box office. It shows how studios often forget what makes stories so good in the first place.
Fans liked the show because while it was very unrealistic, it was also predictable and fun to watch. Is it any surprise that they didn’t respond too well to the live-action adaptation that came out in 2017? We think not. As they say, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Mars Needs Moms – loss of $100-$144 million
Walt Disney Studios had high hopes from science fiction adventure movie Mars Needs Moms when it came out in 2011. So high that the studio pumped over $150 million into production and advertising.
They even hired some of the best animation artists in the world and tried their best to come up with a new and engaging concept that fans would absolutely love. However, this ended up backfiring and many believe it was the production techniques used which cost the studio over $100 million in losses.
Speed Racer – loss of $73-$81 million
Speed Racer, like so many other films on this list, is another established storyline that Hollywood head honchos was guaranteed to make them millions. It did, except it made them millions in losses.
They even cast Emile Hirsch in the lead role and had a supporting cast including Christina Ricci and Matthew Fox. Many say the crew focused too much on stunning visuals than creating a coherent storyline. The studio made a loss of over $70 million against a production budget of over $120 million.
Gigli – loss of $72 million
Fans just can’t seem to get enough of celebrity couples in the tabloids, so you’d think that seeing them together in the same movie is a guaranteed hit, right? Well, it works in lots of cases, but Gigli unfortunately wasn’t one of those movies.
Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck were one of the hottest couples at the time and played the lead roles in this flick. Unfortunately, fans just didn’t warm up too much to the storyline and the movie made a loss of over $70 million.
Stealth – loss of $96 million
While it’s awful how studios end up losing billions of dollars on flops, some movies are just destined to be like that. The movie starred Jessica Biel, Jamie Foxx and Josh Lucas who play navy pilots.
Is it any wonder that fans started comparing it to Top Gun and 2001? In fact, fans even found the plot too predictable and unengaging. Is it any surprise then that the studio ended up making a loss of over $90 million against a production budget of $135 million?
The Good Dinosaur – loss of $85 million
The Good Dinosaur has the unfortunate honor of being Pixar’s first flop. In fact, this movie epitomizes just how confusing the business of movies is. The movie made over $330 million, which is pretty impressive. We wouldn’t be surprised if you’ve seen this film.
However, the studio still ended up losing lots of money because of an exorbitant advertising and marketing campaign. That being said, it’s a good film worth checking out. It’s animation and storyline received major praise and it was nominated for several awards.
Evan Almighty – loss of $88 million
Evan Almighty was the sequel to Jim Carey’s 2003 blockbuster hit Bruce Almighty. The studio signed Steve Carrell for the lead role, and he did not disappoint. The 2007 film even included Morgan Freeman, Jonah Hill and Lauren Graham.
However, the treatment of animals on set created a huge controversy which led to calls to boycott the film. That’s ironic considering the movie has a pro-environment message. The studio made a loss of over $88 million on this one against a budget of over $200 million.
The Mummy – loss of $95 million
Studios always face an uphill battle when remaking classics. Brendan Fraser’s Mummy franchise continues to be one of the most successful to this day. The studio had high hopes for a remake and cast Tom Cruise, who is without a doubt a superstar in another league compared to Fraser.
However, fans weren’t too keen on the updated special effects and storyline and the movie ended up making a loss of over $95 million. That didn’t stop them from making a sequel though. Critics said it was a huge letdown compared to the original films.
Jack Frost – loss of $68 million
Many people might be surprised to find this movie on this list. Jack Frost is widely regarded as one of the best holiday movies and the father-son bonding is legendary. In fact, most people ended up shedding a tear or ten by the time the movie ended.
However, the cult classic was a huge commercial failure when it was released in 1998. The movie made a little over $30 million against a production budget of $85 million. After taking marketing and advertising into account, the movie made a loss of $68 million. That’s rough.
Pixels – loss of $75 million
It seems like Pixel was conceived with the purpose of staying on trend rather than making a good movie. You can usually tell how a movie is going to be like by the trailer but this one was all excitement and no content when it was released.
Even Adam Sandler’s presence didn’t help turn this into a blockbuster. While the movie would do much better outside North America, its financial performance is still considered underwhelming especially if you take into account the $130 million production budget. It made a loss of over $75 million.
Ghostbusters – loss of $75 million
On paper, the 2016 remake of Ghostbusters had everything going for itself. The all-female cast included Kate McKinnon, Kristen Wiig and even Leslie Jones. The movie was supposed to be a wholesome, family-friendly adventure.
However, fans found it boring and the studio ended up making a loss of over $75 million with this flick. While the movie did well abroad, the marketing expense was so high that it would need to make at least $300 million to break even. Interestingly, they have another remake planned which will completely ignore the events of this film.
Gotti – $1.6 million opening weekend
As mean as this may sound, there’s a lot of John Travolta films that could just as easily have made it on this list. However, his 2018 release Gotti might just be his worst.
In fact, the movie was so bad that it has a 0% rating on the popular review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes and is only the third movie ever to bear the ignominy. Critics were very harsh, with one calling it the worst mob movie ever while another said the movie belonged in a “cement bucket at the bottom of the river.” Ouch.
Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within – loss of $94 million
The late 2000s was when CGI started getting really impressive and audiences got to see amazing films like Avatar. What’s really interesting is that while James Cameron received praise for the CGI in Avatar, it wasn’t actually the first movie to use those techniques.
That credit goes to 2001’s Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. The film starred Alec Baldwin and Steve Buscemi. Despite the $137 million budget and impressive animations, the film just didn’t take off. The studio wound up with a loss of over $94 million.
Hugo – loss of $57-$92 million
Making high-budget films is always tricky because the film has to make even more money to break even before it starts making a profit. Martin Scorsese’s Hugo starring Asa Butterfield and Sacha Baron Cohen shows just that.
The film won two BAFTAs and received several other nominations. It even appeared on the top 10 list for 2011’s releases. However, it still ended up losing money and the loss is estimated to be close to between $57 and $92 million. We never thought a movie with a 93% rating on Rotten Tomatoes could also flop!
The Wolfman – loss of $76-$80 million
Fans of the 1941 horror movie of The Wolfman must have had high expectations from this flick. The movie came out in 2010 and starred Benicio Del Toro, Emily Blunt, and Sir Anthony Hopkins. However, the movie opened to a lukewarm reception.
While the special effects were lauded, many said the movie suffered from a predictable and uninteresting plot. Despite the studio pumping well over $150 million into production, it ended up making a loss of over $76 million. Interestingly, it did win the award for Best Makeup.
Osmosis Jones – loss of $63 million
People who grew up in the early 2000s might remember science fiction cartoon Osmosis Jones. Warner Bros decided to cash in on the success of the cartoon series by turning it into a big-budget movie. Chris Rock played the lead role and the supporting cast also included Bill Murray.
While the movie was well received by both critics and audiences, it was unable to recover its $75 million production budget. It wounded up making a loss of over $63 million. It continues featuring on lists of the biggest box office duds to this day.
Rise of the Guardians – loss of $87 million
You’d think that the folks over at DreamWorks Studios have a Midas Touch of sorts. Every film released by the studio has turned out to be a major blockbuster. However, Rise of the Guardians shows how even they mess up from time to time.
While the film’s announcement and promotional campaign generated a lot of excitement, the storyline turned out to be a huge disappointment for audiences and critics. In addition, the production budget and other expenses were so high that the studio ended up making a loss of $87 million on this one.
Town and Country – loss of $85 million
Town and Country shows how adding as many famous faces as possible to the cast just isn’t enough to turn a dull storyline into something fun and exciting. The movie starred Diane Keaton, Warren Beatty, Goldie Hawn and Gary Shandling.
The studio invested over $90 million in production and other expenses. However, when it came out in 2001, it couldn’t even make $10 million. To this day, it is widely regarded as one of the biggest flops of all time and has a Rotten Tomatoes rating of only 13%.
Treasure Planet – loss of $85 million
As far as old Disney movies go, Treasure Planet is pretty interesting. The movie starred Joseph Gordon-Levitt as wannabe pirate Jim Hawkins and would even go on to become a cult classic, becoming something of a legend in the age of the internet.
While the 2002 film was rated positively by critics, it did not do well commercially and made a loss of over $85 million. This is largely due to its budget of $140 million, which it was never able to recover.
Seventh Son – loss of $85 million
Casting high-profile actors and actresses is a double-edged sword. While the publicity this generates can draw audiences to cinemas, it can also raise their expectations. More often than not, movies rarely live up to the hype and Seventh Son shows just why.
The 2014 film had a budget of $95 million and featured the likes of Jeff Bridges and Julianne Moore. However, audiences were very disappointed the studio made a loss of over $85 million on this flick. The lack of on-screen chemistry and poor special effects, in particular, were criticized.
Ali – loss of $63 million
Legendary boxer Muhammed Ali is widely regarded as one of the greatest athletes of all time. Is it any surprise then that Hollywood executives thought his biopic was a guaranteed moneymaker?
The 2001 film featured Will Smith in the leading role, and it was supposed to be a look at his incredible story to the top. While Will Smith received several nominations for his acting, the movie’s performance wasn’t able to recover the high cost of marketing and advertising and the studio wound up losing over $63 million.
Supernova – loss of $83 million
It’s really hard to overstate just how bad the 2000 release Supernova was. The film, which belongs to the science fiction and horror genre, starred James Spader, Angela Bassett and Robert Forster. It was directed by Francis Ford Coppola.
The movie was considered so bad that many considered it an insult and it holds a Rotten Tomatoes score of only 10%. Even MGM predicted it would lose money on this film before it was released. Taking into account the $90 million production budget, the film made a loss of over $83 million.
Allied – loss of $75-$90 million
We can’t deny just how amazing Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard look together throughout this movie. In fact, this is even supposed to be the film that broke up Pitt and Angelina Jolie.
However, the wartime thriller just couldn’t deliver considering the high expectations it was bound to suffer from due to Pitt and Cotillard. It had a production budget of $85 million and performed very poorly in North America. While the movie did much better overseas, Paramount Pictures wound up losing well over $75 million on this flick.
Alexander – loss of $71 million
You’d think that a movie about legendary emperor Alexander the Great was bound to draw audiences to movie theaters. Warner Bros. Studio even cast Colin Farrell, Angelina Jolie, Jared Leto and Rosario Dawson for this movie.
It even had Oliver Stone as the director. However, the 3-hour long film was poorly received by critics and holds a Rotten Tomatoes rating of only 16%. In addition, many said it felt more like a documentary than a movie. The production budget for this film was $155 million and it made a loss of $71 million.
Justice League – cost: $300 million; earning: $658 million
It’s no secret that when it comes to making movies about beloved DC and Marvel superheroes, nothing but the best will do. However, Justice League was far from the best superhero movie we’ve seen.
While it technically did not make a loss, the film is still widely considered a flop based on just how huge executives expected it to be. In addition, the movie’s $300 million earnings pale in comparison to the billions earned by the Avengers franchise. Sorry Batman and Superman. Better luck next time! We’re sure fans won’t mind another Justice League movie.
Green Lantern – loss of $98 million
Movies from the DC Comics and Marvel comics multiverses have always been some of the most impressive productions in recent years. However, there are also quite a few which completely flopped at the box office.
The movie had Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively in the lead roles and, according to some estimates, the production budget was well over $500 million. However, the film did not perform very well at the box office and the studio lost almost $100 million. On the bright side, it also gave us one of Hollywood’s best couples.
Gods of Egypt – loss of $79-$90 million
Gerard Butler became a household name, as far as action flicks go at least, after his amazing performance in 300 which came out in 2006. Buoyed by his success, Summit Entertainment cast him in the lead role for their 2016 fantasy adventure Gods of Egypt.
The film even starred the late Chadwick Boseman. However, neither fans nor critics really liked the movie and despite a production budget of $140 million, the film would gross only $30 million in the United States and Canada. Insiders estimate it lost anywhere between $79 and $90 million.
Basic Instinct 2 – loss of $32 million
It always takes a bold attempt to follow up on a cult classic with a sequel that lives up to its predecessor’s success. Sequels often end up either being a huge hit or a huge dud, removing the sheen on the whole franchise. Unfortunately, Basic Instinct 2 was nowhere close to Basic Instinct.
The first film was so good that producers had been planning a sequel for quite some time. In fact, this movie was 15 years in the making. However, most fans didn’t respond very well to the plot of the sequel and the studio made a loss of approximately $32 million.
Hellboy – Loss of $40 million
With all of the hype that superheroes have been getting in the movies lately, it only makes sense that some directors would try to revive some of the less popular heroes that don’t often get the limelight. That’s exactly what happened with 2019’s Hellboy, and it was poised to do quite well. There hadn’t been a movie from the franchise in quite some time, so it seemed like a great opportunity.
Yet for whatever reason, the film really just flopped. It’s more commercial performance was mirrored by an awful critical performance, with critics just ripping it apart.
Sorcerer – Loss of $42 million
Looking back, it seems kinda weird that Sorcerer did so poorly. It came out at a time when action films were really popular, yet it just fell flat on its face. That can largely be attributed to one fact: Star Wars. Sorcerer came out at about the same time that the first Star Wars movie did, and we should all know by now just how hard it is to compete with Star Wars.
While it was overlooked at the time of its release, critics have since come around to it and many people love Sorcerer these days.
Gemini Man – Loss of $75 million
Will Smith has been in the news quite a bit in the past few months, though that is largely unrelated to his career as an actor. His personal life and relationship to his wife has been quite controversial as of late, and that might be a good thing, as it distracts from how big of a failure his movie Gemini Man was.
A thriller that was largely marketed around the fact that it featured Will Smith, uh, playing two characters, it did horribly. Some say it lost even more than $75 million, with estimates climbing to over $100 million.
Red Planet – Loss of $93 million
Hey, who doesn’t like science fiction movies? Any films that feature people travelling to far off planets will always capture the imagination of audiences. But it should also be noted that, while sci-fi flicks can be done quite well (2001: A Space Odyssey, anyone?), they can also flop… hard. That’s nothing new. And we saw that quite well in the year 2000 when Red Planet was released.
It was the director’s first foray into the film world, and it did not do well at all. It is thought that this movie resulted in an almost $100 million loss.
K-19: The Widowmaker – Loss of $94 million
Released in 2002, K-19: The Widowmaker is a historical movie from Katheryn Bigalow. It was all about a Soviet submarine, and it even featured Harrison Ford playing a Russian man. That should give you an idea about the level of quality that we are discussing here.
There were just a lot of poor decisions that made this movie a lot worse than it should have been, and critics and audiences alike hated it. It ended up being a historic box office bomb, with estimates placing its net losses at around $94 million. Yeah… that’s a failure.
The Nutcracker in 3D – Loss of $95 million
Making Christmas movies is a tricky business. People tend to love watching old movies on Christmas. That’s why the Charlie Brown Christmas movie and the Grinch are on rotation all December. Anyone who makes a new Christmas movie has to compete with the classics, and that can be really hard.
That’s what was attempted with The Nutcracker in 3D in 2010, and it sadly did not stack up to those movies that we love. Not even close. The movie was just straight up weird, and pretty much no one liked it. Even the 3D effects couldn’t save it!
A Sound of Thunder – Loss of $96 million
A Sound of Thunder is one of those frustrating movies that are just awful to think about. We don’t say that because it was all that awful. Well, okay, it was bad, but it wasn’t THAT bad. It’s frustrating because it had a lot of potential to be great.
Based on a story by the legendary science fiction author Ray Bradbury, A Sound of Thunder really could have been a good movie. But for whatever reason, it really just wasn’t all that entertaining. It had a budget of about $80 million and barely raked in anything at the box office.
A Wrinkle in Time – Loss of $130 million
Lots of people love the original A Wrinkle in Time story, so there was tons of hype built up around the 2018 adaptation before it came out. People were a bit skeptical when Oprah Winfrey of all people was announced as one of the leading actors, but they were still looking forward to it. It turns out that their skepticism was justified.
While there were successful aspects of the film, most people thought that it relied too hard on CGI and just didn’t make a whole lot of sense. It ended up losing a massive amount of money.
Terminator: Dark Fate – Loss of $110-$130 million
You would think that a classic franchise like Terminator would always be able to produce movies that did well at the box office. Many have argued that later Terminator movies lost some of the charm of the original films, but people still would go and see them regardless. So what happened when Terminator: Dark Fate released in 2019? Well, it did so poorly that all plans to keep making Terminator movies were, well, terminated.
Yes, it did so badly that it basically cancelled the entire franchise. That is definitely not a performance to be proud of, we’ll say that.
Missing Link – Loss of $100 million
You know, we’re not entirely sure why Missing Link did all that poorly. It got great reviews, and it is supposedly a really charming movie about a Sasquatch that goes and finds the rest of his family. Plus, it had a star-studded cast, including Hugh Jackman and Zoe Saldana. So how did it fail? We honestly don’t know.
We can say, however, that we basically had no idea that this movie existed when it came out. So perhaps its failure came in its inability to find good advertising. Either way, the animated film absolutely bombed.
Transformers: The Last Knight – Loss of $100 million
There was once a time when the biggest movies in the world were Transformers movies. The classic franchise enjoyed a renaissance when Michael Bay took directorial hold, and it looked like it would be around for forever. But it seems that people have moved on from Transformers and no longer care about it. We guess they just like superhero movies now.
Anyway, Transformers: The Last Knight released in 2017 and was pretty much met with universal disdain from all critics. It is only the second Transformers movie to bomb at the box office, and it did so in a spectacular way.
Robin Hood (2018) – Loss of $83 million
We’re not really sure why anyone thought that a Robin Hood movie in 2018 was totally necessary. Perhaps they were just trying to ride on the hype that archery had after the Hunger Games trilogy, but even so, that feels a bit late. It seemed like it had a bit of potential due to a good cast, but that proved completely untrue.
Most aspects of the film were just plain bad. It winded up performing absolutely horribly, and very few people actually went and saw it. Much like the King Arthur movie from the previous year, actually.
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets – Loss of $82 million
With an extremely unique and recognizable title, you would think that there would be very few people out there that don’t recognize Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. Yet it remains in obscurity. That should speak to the fact that the movie was seen by basically no one.
It may be loved in its native France, but it did really poorly in America, resulting in a massive loss for the filmmakers. You would think that a movie starring superstar celebs like Rihanna and Cara Delevinge would do well, but even they couldn’t save this one.
Dark Phoenix – Loss of $79-$133 million
Wait a second, you’re telling us that a modern superhero movie DIDN’T gross a massive amount of money at the box office? Apparently so. 2019’s Dark Phoenix attempted to generate some excitement for a relatively obscure X-Men hero named, you guessed it, Dark Phoenix. But some weird problems with the creation of the film ended up with the movie feeling rushed together and not entirely cohesive.
It got really bad reviews and lost a ton of money at the box office, with some estimates placing the net loss at $133 million (although it could be a bit lower).
Blade Runner 2049 – Loss of $80 million
Making sequels is tricky. You need to please fans that are looking for something new while simultaneously staying true to what made the original movie great. And all of that gets even harder when the original film was released decades before the sequel! Blade Runner 2049 tried its best to remake the magic of the first Blade Runner movie, and many people have argued that it did that quite well.
But that doesn’t mean that audiences were interested. The hype just wasn’t there for this long-delayed sequel. Audiences weren’t excited, and it ended up bombing at the box office.
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part – Loss of $79-$133 million
Speaking of sequels that didn’t do well at the box office, let’s talk about the Lego Movie 2: The Second Part. The original Lego Movie did really well and was well-loved by both audiences and critics, so what exactly lled to this movie falling apart in terms of its financial performance?
It’s hard to say. Another Lego movie had performed poorly before this one came out, so this movie’s bomb status was perhaps just a result of kids moving on from Lego movies towards other things. Maybe there were all just focused on Frozen or something. Who knows.
Solo: A Star Wars Story – Loss of $76 million
Star Wars remains an unbeatable franchise in modern pop culture, but the fan base is beginning to become divided. With opinions on the recent trilogy being mixed, many fans have started to become more interested in spin-off stories than the main story. The Mandalorian is incredibly popular, and other movies like Solo: A Star Wars story have been made in recent times.
A movie about Han Solo sounds like a recipe for success, but it ended up being the worst-performing Star Wars movie. It was still generally liked by most viewers, but it just didn’t perform very well.
The Great Wall – Loss of $75 million
Released in 2016, the Great Wall was a Chinese movie about a man stuck inside the Great Wall of China that then fights off a bunch of giant monsters. Sounds like fun, right? Well, it depends on what you’re looking for in a movie. Many people said that the film was way more focused on its action than it was on its storytelling, leaving it feeling flat and rather boring.
The movie actually did pretty good, but it cost so much to make that it still ended up suffering a pretty big loss at the box office.
The BFG – Loss of $71-$100 million
Another film adaptation of a classic story, the BFG was based on the Roald Dahl story of the same name that was released in the 80s. It followed the story of a young child who befriended a big, friendly giant (hence the name). Directed by Steven Spielberg and financed by Disney, this one seemed like it was bound to be a hit. But it just wasn’t!
Sometimes movies just go like that. They just fail for no good reason. Its exact losses aren’t certain, but most estimate it to be somewhere between $71 million and $100 million.
Cats – Loss of $71-$113 million
Of all of the movies on this list, we feel that Cats is the one that is in the least need of an introduction. People weren’t really sure how to feel when it was announced that the classic play would be getting a modern movie adaptation, but they were later CERTAIN that they hated it when they saw the trailers.
The cat/human hybrid characters were just ridiculously creepy. The movie failed spectacularly, and it ended up being a major laughing stock. Like the BFG, its exact losses aren’t known, but some estimates think that it’s over $100 million. Ouch.