List of box office bombs

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In the film and media industry, if a film released in theatres fails to break even by a large amount, it is considered a box office bomb or box office flop, thus losing money for the distributor, studio, and/or production company that invested in it. Due to the secrecy surrounding costs and profit margins in the film industry, figures of losses are usually rough estimates at best, and there are often conflicting estimates over how much a film has lost. To accommodate this uncertainty the losses are presented as ranges where this is the case and the list is ordered alphabetically in the absence of a definitive order. Because the films on the list have been released over a large span of time currency inflation is also a factor that must be considered, so the losses are adjusted for inflation using the United States Consumer Price Index to enable a fair comparison.

Many films on this list grossed more than their production budgets but yet are still regarded as flops. This can be due to Hollywood accounting practices that typically manipulate profits or keep costs secret to avoid profit-sharing agreements,[1] but it is also possible for films to lose money legitimately even when the theatrical gross exceeds the budget. This is because a distributor does not collect the full gross, and the full cost of a film can substantially exceed its production budget once distribution and marketing is taken into account. For example, tax filings in 2010 for Cinemark Theatres show that only 54.5 percent of ticket revenues went to the distributor, with the exhibitor retaining the rest. While the distributor's cut will vary from film to film, a Hollywood studio will typically collect half the gross in the United States and less in other parts of the world. Marketing often represents a substantial share of the overall cost of the picture too: for a film with an average sized budget the promotion and advertising costs are typically half that of the production budget, and in the case of smaller films it is not unusual for the cost of the marketing to be higher than the production budget.[2] In some cases, a company can make profits from a box office bomb when ancillary revenues are taken into account, such as home media sales and rentals, television broadcast rights, and licensing fees, so a film that loses money at the box office can still eventually break even.[3]

Biggest box office bombs[edit]

The following list is limited to films that are potentially among the top one hundred box office losses, adjusted for inflation (approximately upper-bound losses of $70 million or higher).

  film currently playing Background shading indicates films playing in the week commencing 22 June 2018 in theaters around the world.
Biggest box office bombs
Title Year Production budget (net) Gross Estimated loss Ref
Nominal Adjusted for inflation [nb 1]
The 13th Warrior 1999 $100,000,000–160,000,000 $61,700,000 $69,000,000–129,000,000 $101,000,000–190,000,000 [# 1]
47 Ronin 2013 $175,000,000–225,000,000 $151,800,000 $97,000,000–150,000,000 $102,000,000–158,000,000 [# 2]
The Adventures of Baron Munchausen 1988 $46,600,000 $8,100,000 $38,500,000 $80,000,000 [# 3]
The Adventures of Pluto Nash 2002 $100,000,000 $7,100,000 $96,000,000 $131,000,000 [# 4]
The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle 2000 $76,000,000–98,600,000 $35,100,000 $63,500,000 $90,000,000 [# 5]
The Alamo 2004 $107,000,000 $25,800,000 $94,000,000 $122,000,000 [# 6]
Alexander 2004 $155,000,000 $167,300,000 $71,000,000 $92,000,000 [# 7]
Ali 2001 $107,000,000 $87,700,000 $63,000,000 $87,000,000 [# 8]
Alice Through the Looking Glass 2016 $170,000,000 $299,500,000 $70,000,000+ $71,000,000+ [# 9]
Allied 2016 $85,000,000 $118,600,000 $75,000,000–90,000,000 $76,000,000–92,000,000 [# 10]
Around the World in 80 Days 2004 $110,000,000 $72,200,000 $74,000,000 $96,000,000 [# 11]
The Astronaut's Wife 1999 $75,000,000 $19,600,000 $65,000,000 $95,000,000 [# 12]
Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever 2002 $70,000,000 $19,900,000 $70,100,000 $95,000,000 [# 13]
Battlefield Earth 2000 $73,000,000–103,000,000 $29,700,000 $73,300,000 $104,000,000 [# 14]
Beloved 1998 $80,000,000 $22,900,000 $68,500,000 $103,000,000 [# 15]
Ben-Hur 2016 $100,000,000 $94,100,000 $75,000,000–121,700,000 $76,000,000–122,000,000 [# 16]
The BFG 2016 $140,000,000 $179,600,000 $71,000,000–100,000,000 $72,000,000–102,000,000 [# 17]
Blackhat 2015 $70,000,000 $19,700,000 $68,000,000–90,000,000 $70,000,000–93,000,000 [# 18]
Blade Runner 2049 2017 $150,000,000–$185,000,000 $259,100,000 $80,000,000 $80,000,000 [# 19]
Chill Factor 1999 $70,000,000 $11,800,000 $64,000,000 $94,000,000 [# 20]
The Chronicles of Riddick 2004 $105,000,000–120,000,000 $115,800,000 $47,000,000–73,000,000 $61,000,000–95,000,000 [# 21]
Conan the Barbarian 2011 $90,000,000 $48,800,000 $60,000,000–66,000,000 $65,000,000–72,000,000 [# 22]
The Cotton Club 1984 $47,000,000 $25,900,000 $32,100,000 $76,000,000 [# 23]
Cowboys & Aliens 2011 $163,000,000 $174,800,000 $63,000,000–75,000,000 $69,000,000–82,000,000 [# 24]
Cutthroat Island [nb 2] 1995 $98,000,000 $18,300,000 $89,000,000 $143,000,000 [# 25]
Deepwater Horizon 2016 $110,000,000–120,000,000 $119,500,000 $60,000,000–112,000,000 $61,000,000–114,000,000 [# 26]
Doctor Dolittle 1967 $17,000,000 $9,000,000 $10,800,000 $79,000,000 [# 27]
Driven 2001 $94,000,000 $54,700,000 $67,000,000 $93,000,000 [# 28]
Dudley Do-Right 1999 $70,000,000 $10,000,000 $65,000,000 $95,000,000 [# 29]
Ender's Game 2013 $110,000,000 $125,500,000 $68,000,000 $71,000,000 [# 30]
Evan Almighty 2007 $175,000,000 $173,400,000 $88,000,000 $104,000,000 [# 31]
The Fall of the Roman Empire 1964 $18,400,000 $4,800,000 $14,300,000 $113,000,000 [# 32]
Fantastic Four 2015 $120,000,000–125,000,000 $168,000,000 $80,000,000–100,000,000 $83,000,000–103,000,000 [# 33]
Fathers' Day 1997 $85,000,000 $35,700,000 $67,000,000 $102,000,000 [# 34]
Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within 2001 $137,000,000 $85,100,000 $94,000,000 $130,000,000 [# 35]
The Finest Hours 2016 $70,000,000–80,000,000 $52,100,000 $75,000,000 $76,000,000 [# 36]
Geostorm 2017 $120,000,000 $221,600,000 $71,600,000 $72,000,000 [# 37]
Ghostbusters 2016 $144,000,000 $229,100,000 $75,000,000 $76,000,000 [# 38]
Gigli 2003 $75,600,000 $7,300,000 $72,000,000 $96,000,000 [# 39]
Gods of Egypt 2016 $140,000,000 $150,700,000 $79,000,000–90,000,000 $81,000,000–92,000,000 [# 40]
The Good Dinosaur 2015 $175,000,000–200,000,000 $332,200,000 $85,000,000 $88,000,000 [# 41]
The Great Raid 2005 $80,000,000 $10,800,000 $75,000,000 $94,000,000 [# 42]
The Great Wall 2016 $150,000,000 $332,000,000 $75,000,000 $76,000,000 [# 43]
Green Lantern 2011 $200,000,000 $219,900,000 $75,000,000–90,000,000 $82,000,000–98,000,000 [# 44]
Happy Feet Two 2011 $135,000,000 $158,000,000 $65,000,000 $71,000,000 [# 45]
Hard Rain 1998 $70,000,000 $19,900,000 $60,000,000 $90,000,000 [# 46]
Hart's War 2002 $70,000,000–95,000,000 $32,300,000 $62,700,000 $95,000,000–129,000,000 [# 47]
Heaven's Gate 1980 $44,000,000 $3,500,000 $40,500,000 $120,000,000 [# 48]
How Do You Know 2010 $100,000,000 $48,700,000 $76,000,000–105,000,000 $85,000,000–118,000,000 [# 49]
Hudson Hawk 1991 $65,000,000 $17,200,000 $47,800,000 $86,000,000 [# 50]
Hugo 2011 $150,000,000–170,000,000 $185,800,000 $57,000,000–92,000,000 $62,000,000–100,000,000 [# 51]
The Huntsman: Winter's War 2016 $115,000,000 $165,000,000 $75,000,000 $76,000,000 [# 52]
Inchon 1982 $46,000,000 $5,200,000 $40,800,000 $103,000,000 [# 53]
Instinct 1999 $80,000,000 $34,100,000 $63,000,000 $93,000,000 [# 54]
The Invasion 2007 $80,000,000 $40,000,000 $71,000,000 $84,000,000 [# 55]
Ishtar 1987 $51,000,000–55,000,000 $14,400,000 $40,600,000 $87,000,000 [# 56]
Jack Frost 1998 $85,000,000 $34,600,000 $68,000,000 $102,000,000 [# 57]
Jack the Giant Slayer 2013 $185,000,000–200,000,000 $197,700,000 $86,000,000–106,000,000 $90,000,000–111,000,000 [# 58]
John Carter 2012 $263,700,000 $284,100,000 $122,000,000–200,000,000 $130,000,000–213,000,000 [# 59]
Jupiter Ascending 2015 $175,000,000 $184,000,000 $87,000,000–120,000,000 $90,000,000–124,000,000 [# 60]
King Arthur: Legend of the Sword 2017 $175,000,000 $148,700,000 $115,000,000–153,200,000 $115,000,000–153,000,000 [# 61]
K-19: The Widowmaker 2002 $100,000,000 $65,700,000 $67,000,000 $91,000,000 [# 62]
Krull 1983 $27,000,000 $16,500,000 $33,500,000 $82,000,000 [# 63]
Land of the Lost 2009 $100,000,000 $68,800,000 $64,000,000–66,000,000 $73,000,000–75,000,000 [# 64]
Legends of Oz: Dorothy's Return 2014 $70,000,000 $18,700,000 $71,000,000 $73,000,000 [# 65]
Live by Night 2016 $65,000,000 $22,300,000 $75,000,000 $76,000,000 [# 66]
Lolita 1997 $62,000,000 $1,100,000 $61,000,000 $93,000,000 [# 67]
The Lone Ranger 2013 $225,000,000–250,000,000 $260,500,000 $95,000,000–190,000,000 $100,000,000–200,000,000 [# 68]
Lucky You 2007 $55,000,000 $8,400,000 $61,000,000 $72,000,000 [# 69]
The Man from U.N.C.L.E. 2015 $75,000,000 $109,800,000 $80,000,000 $83,000,000 [# 70]
Mars Needs Moms 2011 $150,000,000 $39,000,000 $100,000,000–144,000,000 $109,000,000–157,000,000 [# 71]
Monkeybone 2001 $75,000,000 $7,600,000 $71,000,000 $98,000,000 [# 72]
Monster Trucks 2016 $125,000,000 $64,500,000 $109,000,000–123,100,000 $111,000,000–126,000,000 [# 73]
The Mummy 2017 $195,000,000 $409,100,000 $95,000,000 $95,000,000 [# 74]
The Nutcracker in 3D 2010 $90,000,000 $16,200,000 $82,000,000 $92,000,000 [# 75]
Osmosis Jones 2001 $70,000,000 $14,000,000 $63,000,000 $87,000,000 [# 76]
Pan 2015 $150,000,000 $128,400,000 $86,000,000–150,000,000 $89,000,000–155,000,000 [# 77]
Peter Pan 2003 $130,600,000 $122,000,000 $70,000,000 $93,000,000 [# 78]
Pixels 2015 $88,000,000 $244,900,000 $75,000,000 $77,000,000 [# 79]
Poseidon 2006 $160,000,000 $181,700,000 $69,000,000–77,000,000 $84,000,000–93,000,000 [# 80]
The Postman 1997 $80,000,000 $20,800,000 $70,000,000 $107,000,000 [# 81]
Power Rangers 2017 $100,000,000 $142,300,000 $76,000,000 $76,000,000 [# 82]
The Promise 2016 $90,000,000 $10,500,000 $94,000,000–102,100,000 $96,000,000–104,000,000 [# 83]
R.I.P.D. 2013 $130,000,000–154,000,000 $78,300,000 $91,000,000–115,000,000 $96,000,000–121,000,000 [# 84]
Red Planet 2000 $80,000,000 $33,500,000 $63,000,000 $90,000,000 [# 85]
Rise of the Guardians 2012 $145,000,000 $306,900,000 $87,000,000 $93,000,000 [# 86]
Rollerball 2002 $70,000,000 $25,900,000 $54,000,000 $73,000,000 [# 87]
Rush Hour 3 2007 $140,000,000 $258,000,000 $59,000,000 $70,000,000 [# 88]
Sahara 2005 $160,000,000 $119,300,000 $78,400,000–100,000,000 $98,000,000–125,000,000 [# 89]
Seventh Son 2015 $95,000,000 $114,200,000 $85,000,000 $88,000,000 [# 90]
Soldier 1998 $60,000,000–75,000,000 $14,600,000 $60,000,000 $90,000,000 [# 91]
A Sound of Thunder 2005 $80,000,000 $11,700,000 $74,000,000 $93,000,000 [# 92]
Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas 2003 $60,000,000 $80,800,000 $125,000,000 $166,000,000 [# 93]
Speed Racer 2008 $120,000,000 $93,900,000 $73,000,000–81,000,000 $83,000,000–92,000,000 [# 94]
Sphere 1998 $73,000,000–80,000,000 $50,100,000 $61,000,000 $92,000,000 [# 95]
Stealth 2005 $135,000,000 $76,900,000 $96,000,000 $120,000,000 [# 96]
Supernova 2000 $90,000,000 $14,800,000 $83,000,000 $118,000,000 [# 97]
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows 2016 $135,000,000 $245,600,000 $75,000,000 $76,000,000 [# 98]
Titan A.E. 2000 $75,000,000–90,000,000 $36,800,000 $100,000,000 $142,000,000 [# 99]
Tomorrowland 2015 $180,000,000–190,000,000 $209,200,000 $76,000,000–150,000,000 $78,000,000–155,000,000 [# 100]
Town & Country 2001 $90,000,000 $10,400,000 $85,000,000 $117,000,000 [# 101]
Treasure Planet 2002 $140,000,000 $109,600,000 $85,000,000 $116,000,000 [# 102]
Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets 2017 $177,200,000–180,000,000 $225,900,000 $84,000,000 $84,000,000 [# 103]
Windtalkers 2002 $115,000,000–120,000,000 $77,600,000 $76,000,000–81,000,000 $103,000,000–110,000,000 [# 104]
The Wolfman 2010 $150,000,000 $139,800,000 $76,000,000–80,000,000 $85,000,000–90,000,000 [# 105]
A Wrinkle in Time film currently playing 2018 $100,000,000–130,000,000 $131,100,000 $86,000,000–186,000,000 $86,000,000–186,000,000 [# 106]
xXx: State of the Union 2005 $113,100,000 $71,000,000 $78,000,000 $98,000,000 [# 107]
Zoom 2006 $75,600,000 $12,500,000 $69,000,000 $84,000,000 [# 108]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2018. 
  2. ^ Cutthroat Island was once listed as having the "largest box office loss" by Guinness World Records,[4][5] but the category has since been retired.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Susman, Gary (April 14, 2015). "The 19 Biggest Box Office Bombs in Movie History". Moviefone. Retrieved August 15, 2015. 
  2. ^ Anders, Charlie Jane (January 31, 2011). "How much money does a movie need to make to be profitable?". io9. Retrieved July 12, 2013. 
  3. ^ Davidson, Adam (June 26, 2012). "How Does the Film Industry Actually Make Money". The New York Times. Retrieved August 15, 2015. 
  4. ^ "Largest Box Office Loss". Guinness World Records. HIT Entertainment. Archived from the original on November 27, 2005. Retrieved July 16, 2013. 
  5. ^ McClintock, Pamela (July 8, 2013). "Why 'Mars Needs Moms' bombed for Disney". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved July 16, 2013. Other infamous financial flops include Renny Harlin's pirate pic Cutthroat Island -- listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the biggest bomb of all time -- Sahara, The Adventures of Pluto Nash and Gigli. 

Chart sources[edit]

  1. ^ The 13th Warrior
  2. ^ 47 Ronin
  3. ^ The Adventures of Baron Munchausen
  4. ^ The Adventures of Pluto Nash
  5. ^ The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle
  6. ^ The Alamo
  7. ^ Alexander
  8. ^ Ali
  9. ^ Alice Through the Looking Glass
  10. ^ Allied
  11. ^ Around the World in 80 Days
  12. ^ The Astronaut's Wife
  13. ^ Ballistic
  14. ^ Battlefield Earth
  15. ^ Beloved
  16. ^ Ben-Hur
  17. ^ The BFG
  18. ^ Blackhat
  19. ^ Blade Runner 2049
  20. ^ Chill Factor
  21. ^ The Chronicles of Riddick
  22. ^ Conan the Barbarian
  23. ^ The Cotton Club
  24. ^ Cowboys & Aliens
  25. ^ Cutthroat Island
  26. ^ Deepwater Horizon
  27. ^ Doctor Doolittle
  28. ^ Driven
  29. ^ Dudley Do-Right
  30. ^ Ender's Game
  31. ^ Evan Almighty
  32. ^ The Fall of the Roman Empire
  33. ^ Fantastic Four
  34. ^ Father's Day
  35. ^ Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within
  36. ^ The Finest Hours
  37. ^ Geostorm
  38. ^ Ghostbusters
  39. ^ Gigli
  40. ^ Gods of Egypt
  41. ^ The Good Dinosaur
  42. ^ The Great Raid
  43. ^ The Great Wall
  44. ^ Green Lantern
  45. ^ Happy Feet Two
  46. ^ Hard Rain
  47. ^ Hart's War
  48. ^ Heaven's Gate
  49. ^ How Do You Know
  50. ^ Hudson Hawk
  51. ^ Hugo
  52. ^ The Huntsman
  53. ^ Inchon
  54. ^ Instinct
  55. ^ The Invasion
  56. ^ Ishtar
  57. ^ Jack Frost
  58. ^ Jack the Giant Slayer
  59. ^ John Carter
  60. ^ Jupiter Ascending
  61. ^ King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
  62. ^ K-19: The Widowmaker
  63. ^ Krull
  64. ^ Land of the Lost
  65. ^ Legends of Oz
  66. ^ Live by Night
  67. ^ Lolita
  68. ^ The Lone Ranger
  69. ^ Lucky You
  70. ^ The Man from U.N.C.L.E.
  71. ^ Mars Needs Moms
  72. ^ Monkeybone
  73. ^ Monster Trucks
  74. ^ The Mummy
  75. ^ The Nutcracker in 3D
  76. ^ Osmosis Jones
  77. ^ Pan
  78. ^ Peter Pan
  79. ^ Pixels
  80. ^ Poseidon
  81. ^ The Postman
  82. ^ Power Rangers
  83. ^ The Promise
  84. ^ R.I.P.D.
  85. ^ Red Planet
  86. ^ Rise of the Guardians
  87. ^ Rollerball
  88. ^ Rush Hour 3
  89. ^ Sahara
  90. ^ Seventh Son
  91. ^ Soldier
  92. ^ A Sound of Thunder
  93. ^ Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas
  94. ^ Speed Racer
  95. ^ Sphere
  96. ^ Stealth
  97. ^ Supernova
  98. ^ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows
  99. ^ Titan A.E.
  100. ^ Tomorrowland
  101. ^ Town & Country
  102. ^ Treasure Planet
  103. ^ Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
  104. ^ Windtalkers
  105. ^ The Wolfman
  106. ^ A Wrinkle in Time
  107. ^ XXX: State of the Union
  108. ^ Zoom

Bibliography[edit]