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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

John Carter may be Hollywood’s biggest loser

Ultra competitive movie studios rarely want to sit atop this box-office list. When the Walt Disney Co had said that it...

Written by Reuters | Published: March 30, 2012 2:56:09 pm

Ultra competitive movie studios rarely want to sit atop this box-office list. When the Walt Disney Co had said that it expected its sci-fi movie John Carter to lose about $200 million,it very likely shot the intergalactic box -office bomb to the top of Hollywood’s biggest loser chart.

If so –– and box-office math is always a little tricky in Tinseltown–– the megaflop would achieve iconic status by surpassing the 1995 Geena Davis-Matthew Modine pirate flick Cutthroat Island that the Guinness Book of World Records lists as the biggest bomb of all-time. That movie lost $147 million,according to the online encyclopedia Wikipedia,which also puts the MGM film at the top of its list. Infamous misfires like director Ron Howard’s The Alamo,Eddie Murphy’s The Adventures Of Pluto Nash,the Matthew McConaughey-Penelope Cruz action film Sahara and director Robert Zemeckis’ 2011 animated film Mars Needs Moms all passed the dubious $140 million loss threshold,according to Wikipedia.

The Wikipedia list,for instance,has converted the film’s ticket sales to inflation-adjusted 2012 dollars,but includes only worldwide box-office and not DVD or TV sales. “Then there’s the issue of Hollywood accounting,” said Keith Simanton,managing editor of movie data site IMDb. “You never really know what a budget is for any of these films because Hollywood isn’t very open with its numbers.”

The key problem for John Carter was that it cost more than $350 million to produce and market.

There can be no doubt John Carter will go down in history as a box-office bomb,and with its entrance into Hollywood’s Hall of Shame,it is interesting to note that six of the top 15 movie misfires have been made since 2005,when Hollywood has been in high gear with pricey,special effects budgets.

In 2011 alone,there were two big losers. Disney released Mars Needs Moms,for which it took a write-down of at least $70 million,on a film that had a worldwide box-office of only $38.9 million. DC Comics’ Green Lantern,starring Ryan Reynolds as the keeper of the green ring. That film lost $108.6 million,according to the Wikipedia list.

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