Tag: terminator

Movies: Box Office Bomb vs The Disappointment

The phrase “It totally BOMBED!” is used all the time these days. According to headlines, every other movie is a “box office bomb” unless it makes a billion dollars. I believe this happens because people love to see failure in action, and audiences are always eager to laugh at the next big flop.

However, a lot of the movies being heralded as financial failures are actually very successful, and financial failures are sometimes highlighted as wins. We just happen to get negative or positive spins on select data depending on the blogger, critic, and news station. Whomever effectively owns those said outlets is also a major factor when a movie is released as well, factually speaking. Just look at the Forbes headline for ‘Warcraft’, a movie that didn’t do well domestically but made hundreds of millions over its budget internationally: “Box Office: ‘Warcraft’ Is A $430 Million Dollar Flop”. The title is very misleading, and misrepresents what’s actually going on. Here’s a few examples of box office successes and failures that have been passed off as something else, along with a few examples that were spun correctly across the board:

Terminator Genisys(2015)

“So, think there’s a good script over there?

Terminator Genisys‘ is a classic example of false reporting. Every article read something like this: “Terminator terminated at box office and will end up making a horrific $90m on a $155m budget!” This is totally off. While it’s true that the film made $90m in the states, it made over $350m in the international markets. Even if the film had $100m marketing budget, which it didn’t, that means Genisys made almost 95m over its budget. That means that after everyone had been paid to make the film, the studio put 95m in its bank account. DVD sales for the movie then brought in an additional $25m.

That’s right, we live in a time where a movie that generates over 120 million dollars in pure profit is sold to the public as a box office bomb, and this happens because the forces that be are only giving you the numbers from domestic sales. This movie wasn’t a big enough hit to fuel future sequels and add a new tentpole to the producing studio, but that makes it a disappointment, not a flop.

Spin: Box Office Bomb

Verdict: Financial Success/Big Dissapointment

P.S. ‘Terminator Genisys’ was a terrible movie. Don’t even bother watching it.

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice(2016)

“Bro, it’s just Twitter, I’ll stop you from responding if I have to.”

This movie made $872m dollars on a $250m dollar budget. Even after marketing it made hundreds of millions in profit. This movie was not a box office bomb, but the majority of news sources called it one because it was universally hated. Critics tore it up and audiences were underwhelmed. This movie led to its director, Zack Snyder, being replaced as the head of the DC movie universe, and has made the execs over at DC take a real hard look at their upcoming movie lineup. But it still made a ton of money; there’s no denying that. It’s one of the most financially successful movies of all time. All of this makes BvS a big disappointment, not a flop.

Spin: Box Office Bomb

Verdict: Financial Success/Massive Disappointment


By the looks on their faces they just watched the 'Ghostbusters' trailer.
By the looks on their faces they just watched the ‘Ghostbusters’ trailer.

The jury is still out on this one, but lets look at the data. This movie was made for $144m after rebates and tax incentives, and the studio spent at least $100m on marketing. Just to break even this movie needs to generate a minimum of $244m. Opening weekend it made $46m domestically and $18m overseas. To date the film has made $64m, and its been out for a week. This is not good. For a film with a budget that size that was created to be a studio tentpole, and since it was released right in the middle of summer, it should have made at LEAST $65m to be on the road to success. Also, next week sees the opening of Jason Bourne, and Suicide Squad opens the week after that. It’ll be lucky to make another $100m, everything points to the movie being steamrolled into oblivion over the next couple of weeks.

What are the headlines saying? Things like “Huge Win!” and “Ghostbusters is the highest grossing comedy since Pitch Perfect 2!” This is happening because this movie has a lot of controversy swirling around it, and the media is trying to put a positive spin on it. Mainstream media also isn’t bringing up that Ghostbusters has been denied release in China, the second largest film market in the world. The powers that be in China say they don’t believe this movie has a large enough following in China to deserve a release. In reality, this movie is suffering, and only time will tell whether it’s a box office bomb or just a disappointment. 

Spin: Financial Win

Verdict: TBD, but so far a Box Office Bomb/Big Disappointment



Dredd cost $50m to make, and it only made $35m during its theatrical run. The good thing is they barely spent any money on marketing, only around $20m, and if you ask Karl Urban it was actually much less than that. The movie then went on to make $20-25m in DVD sales, and then made a bunch of multi-million dollar streaming deals, so in the end the film paid for itself.  While this movie isn’t a huge failure overall, it’s definitely a box office bomb. To me, any film that comes up around 35m dollars short of its overall cost during its theatrical run is a dud. Now, I think if they’d spent $100m on a marketing campaign for Dredd the film would’ve come out on top, but the “why” isn’t important when you’re determining whether or not a movie is a box office dud. However, this movie also picked up a fervent fanbase, and received positive reviews across the board. This is important to note, because a film that struggles to cross that financial finish line can still be the foundation for future entries if it garners enough interest in the long run. This movie is much more likely to spark a sequel than ‘Terminator Genisys’. I mean, here it is four years later and people are still talking about the need for another one, or even having it made into a Netflix show.   

Spin: Box Office Bomb

Verdict: Box Office Bomb/Huge Fan Success  

When all is said and done, don’t believe the headlines. Take a look at international sales just as much as domestic, because that’s where idiots start their smear campaigns. The overall total number a movie made worldwide is what matters. Money is money, it doesn’t matter where it’s made, that doesn’t change no matter what kind of headline people try to create.

Oh, and before people start getting all weird, I didn’t cover theater licensing, studio endorsements, and all the other roundabout ways these movies might have made more on the backend. This is a blog article, not an analytical accounting essay that covers the total financial breakdowns of these movies in their entirety. 




batman, box office, box office bomb, budget, caleb morgan, cinematography, dawn of justice, disappointment, dredd, fans, filmmaking, genisys, ghostbusters, jason bourne, karl urban, kristen wiig, leslie jones, media, movies, spectacle photo, suicide squad, superman, terminator, vs, warcraft

Where Have All the Women Gone?

People have been complaining a lot lately about the absence of strong female heroes/stand alone characters, and their absence from toy aisles across the nation. This discussion has been going on for awhile now, but the topic is now under a microscope due to Disney’s recent mishandling of the character Rey from ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’.  Its outraged a lot of people, and rightly so. For those of you who haven’t heard about it, this is what’s happening: Rey is the main character of the new Star Wars movie, yet she was left out of the majority of the merchandise. Hasbro released a Disney approved set of characters from the movie and showed off their upcoming Star Wars Monopoly game, and Rey was nowhere to be found. When all is said and done, Disney is responsible for this. They put all their money down on Kilo Ren to be the Star Wars toy everyone wanted, but they were dead wrong, and now they have tons of Kilo Ren merchandise they can’t sell and everyone’s screaming for more Rey. If you want to read more about Disney’s latest blunder, and the steps they’re taking to fix it, click here at and here.

Quick, I need to hide. Lets go to the toy aisle in Target, no one will expect to find me there!
Quick, I need to hide. Lets go to the toy aisle in Target, no one will expect to find me there!

Strong female leads in entertainment are great. Personally, I find female characters more interesting. Here at Spectacle, we’re constantly churning out female driven content because they’re such awesome subjects. We’re constantly writing scripts and coming up with female-centric images, and it’s due to us being inspired by women leads. Buffy Summers(Buffy the Vampire Slayer), The Bride(Kill Bill 1&2), Jill Valentine(Resident Evil), Evelyn Salt(Salt), Lisbeth Salander(The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Lara Croft(Tomb Raider), etc. are just some of my favorites, yet they are seriously downplayed for the masses. When Tomb Raider(2013) was released, it sold 5 million copies in its first month. As of April 2015, it had reached 9 million sales making a reported $550 MILLION dollars. That’s a slam dunk success, but could I find a single Lara Croft toy at Target? Nope. Besides the game itself, there wasn’t a single piece of her merchandise available in any big retail stores.

“And then they said I “wasn’t marketable”…”

Another recent snub has been from The Walking Dead video game; Clementine is nowhere to be found on retail shelves. Yet, The Walking TV show, which is headed up by male protagonists, has toys everywhere(except for Michonne, good luck finding her action figure since they didn’t make enough). I know those two examples I just threw down are video games, and right now you’re thinking video games don’t really have that much merchandise for any franchise, but you’re wrong. Know what toys are all over shelves when their games are released? Halo. Gears of War. Call of Duty. Batman. Mario. Zelda. These are just a few examples of games featuring male leads that have a massive amount of items being sold in big chain retail stores like Target and Walmart. Sadly, I can’t think of a single female-led game franchise that even comes close to any one of those, and it’s annoying.

If only people took Clem as seriously as she does killing zombies.
If only people took Clem as seriously as she does killing zombies.

Even Disney’s ‘Once Upon a Time‘, a show that’s watched by millions of children around the world, has no merchandise on the shelves. No surprise there, since its lead is Emma Swan. Disney could definitely box up all the princesses from that show and make a killing, but they don’t, and I’m not sure why. Past female toy sales data, maybe? It’s very frustrating, because the powers that be won’t even give a real reason. If they say anything at all, they say things like “Oh, we forgot.” or “Oh ya, we were coming out with her toys later, nothing to see here!” and “But look at THESE toys from Frozen! See? Women!”. I get the feeling that since companies have tried to market terrible movies like ‘Aeon Flux’ and ‘Elektra’ with merchandise and failed, they chalk it up to “Well, female retail items don’t sell. We won’t be doing that again.”. If that’s the case, it’s ridiculous. It’s not that consumers don’t want female toys and marketing pushes, we just don’t buy into it when the movies/games suck. If they marketed a good franchise, like ‘Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles‘, we’d love it. But they don’t, they refuse to hit the market hard and end up canceling awesome stuff like that…which has made me very, very bitter.

One of the top Terminator models to date.
One of the top Terminator models to date.

What I don’t agree with is people saying there’s no good female roles/leads in the entertainment industry. They also say that when women do hit a lead role they’re over-sexualized, like that doesn’t happen to both men and women. Did you hear anyone complaining about over-sexualization when ‘Magic Mike’ hit the theaters? Everyones over-sexualized in entertainment. So what. As far as there being no female role-model leads, that’s entirely false. I watch more movies and television than anyone you know, and I play a disgusting amount of video games, and I can tell you there’s a ton of great female leads and franchises. The problem is they’re not being pushed as much as male driven franchises. The franchises exist, and maybe if the companies producing them had the stones to market them, you’d know they’re out there. There’s this overwhelming hesitancy when it comes to promoting women across all entertainment industries, and it really needs to stop. I want my freaking Lara Croft action figures, and I want them now.     

Here's Lara, judging you for not demanding her action figure.
Here’s Lara, judging you for not demanding her action figure.

caleb morgan, clementine, disney, entertainment, females, jill valentine, merchandise, photography, resident evil, rey, spectacle photo, star wars, summer glau, terminator, the sarah connor chronicles, the walking dead, tomb raider, toys, women