The last few days of every year is filled with lists of the best of and worst of for that year. And while we could do a list like that, I’m not. Instead I’m going to make use feel better about the movies that are important to us as comic / pop culture fans. Movies like Captain America: Civil War which cost $250 Million to make but pulled in $1.1 Billion at the box office. Or even films that had mixed reviews like Suicide Squad which cost $175 million to make but brought in $745 million. Even if the film wasn’t exactly what you wanted, we still want the films to do well enough to justify making more. And as long as they make a profit, there’s a chance the next one will be really good. I mean Warcraft was pretty well panned by critics, but brought in $433 million worldwide, so I’d expect a sequel.
But there are some movies that didn’t do so well. Movies that the studios had a lot of faith in. The remake of Ben Hur lost $120 million. Gods of Egypt lost $90 million and Huntsman: Winter’s War lost $75 million. Don’t expect to see sequels to either of those. Around that same range of $70 million lost are Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2, Ghostbusters and Alice Through The Looking Glass… a sign that not all sequels bring strong audiences.
This is why Sony is rebooting the Spider-Man franchise for the third time in fifteen years… because even the bad ones make a profit. Even a film like Green Lantern was only a minimal loss after home sales were factored in. So studios will continue to take a chance with Super Hero movies until one of them comes along and performs like Ben Hur.
So Warner Bros will do another Green Lantern, hoping to catch lightning in a bottle. Sony will keep rebooting Spider-Man until every dollar is wrung out of those red and blue tights… and don’t be surprised if we see Fox line up another Fantastic Four reboot in the next two years. Movie studios don’t like to take risks and right now Super Heroes, even as obscure as Deadpool and Guardians of the Galaxy, are a better bet than some of the most beloved franchises.