Published Nov 23, 2016The year's nearly over, meaning everyone will soon beat you over the head with their top choices of 2016. That's all well and good, to be sure, but what about those of us who crave some sweet, sweet schadenfreude? Fortunately, our devilish desires have been fulfilled with a list of the year's biggest box-office flops.
Entertainment Weekly has compiled a list of the year's biggest letdowns, and it's an odd mix of movies we thought deserved more praise and movies that we barely remember ever existed this year. (Keep in mind that all numbers are in USD.)
Some movies managed to make up their losses with international releases. For example, the videogame adaptation Warcraft cost $160 million to make, and brought in a meagre $47.2 million in North America. Then it went on to make $386.3 million overseas.
Similarly, the Divergent film Allegiant cost $110 million to make and brought in a mere $66 million in North America, but piled on an additional $113 million internationally. The Dan Brown adaptation Inferno similarly only earned $33 million in North America but an impressive $178 million worldwide.
Gods of Egypt cost an estimated $140 million to make and made just $31 million in North America. Factor in an additional $119 million in foreign box office, and the film just barely scraped its way to breaking even. Similarly, the ill-fated Zoolander 2 cost $50 million to make and made $56 million worldwide — not exactly a massive profit.
As for downright money losers, there were plenty. Ben-Hur cost $100 million to make and brought in a total of $94 million. The Matthew McConaughey slave drama Free State of Jones cost $50 million to make and brought in a measly $23 million. Similarly, the star-studded comedy Keeping Up with the Joneses brought in $27 million despite its $40 million price tag.
It didn't take a genius to know that an adaptation of the eye-rolling book Pride and Prejudice and Zombies would be ill-fated. The film cost $28 million and brought in $16 million. But quality doesn't necessarily determine box office. The Lonely Island offered up a musical comedy classic with Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping, but the film only brought in $9 million despite its $20 million budget. People just really didn't want to see comedies in the theatres this year. Sacha Baron Cohen's action comedy The Brothers Grimsby cost $35 million to make and brought in $25 million worldwide.
Then there were some downright disasters. Tom Hiddleston's Hank Williams biopic I Saw the Light cost $13 million to make but only brought in $1.6 million. Jake Gyllenhaal's Demolition similarly brought in just under $2 million, while the Natalie Portman western Jane Got a Gun, which had been shelved for years, finally saw the light of day and brought in $1.5 million.