Talk:Box office bomb

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First Sentence[edit]

Would someone mind clarifying the first line for me? The part where it goes "sometimes preceding hype regarding its cost, production, or marketing efforts."Is this talking about projected box office bombs, where hype is indicating the movie isn't out yet? thanks.


Isn't there another article on this subject? If I remember correctly, it wasn't a stub. Rintrah 17:34, 6 October 2006 (UTC)

There was another one, but wildly unsourced in the end.
So it was deleted? Rintrah 01:23, 14 October 2006 (UTC)

Use of 'Domestic' to mean US, even in Britain[edit]

I'd need conformation of this, but when I worked in the film industry in the UK, it was common to refer to US takings as 'Domestic' and everything else as 'International' (at least for US-made films). (talk) 17:53, 1 August 2008 (UTC)

Domestic is usually USofA and Canada. UK would be considered International for Holllltwood context. Kid Bugs (talk) 02:01, 23 January 2013 (UTC)

Definition of "box office bomb"[edit]

Alister, we get that you're just hell bent on "winning" the List of box office bombs AfD (which, with the tally 4-6 against deletion five days in, is pretty unlikely), but this is verging into WP:SNOW and dealing in bad faith and definitely a WP:POINT violation. Are you seriously trying to tell us that because you have yet to see a link (excuse me, a link you can't find some excuse to ignore) explicitly stating "The definition of a box office bomb is ..." you refuse to accept that the term exists? Let me put it baldly: do you deny that the term is in widespread vogue, and that the accepted definition in the business is a money-losing film?

Let's take it down the line. The Washington Post article's headline claims that F9/11 isn't a box office bomb ... and the only information thereafter describes the film's unexpected financial success. The Ask Yahoo link describes nothing but ... films that lost money at the box office. The Wiktionary link gives the accepted definition ... but, well, right, that would discredit the argument, huh? As far as the Cineaste and LA Daily News links go, your unwillingness to read any source you can't do from your computer is not our problem; the references are there and correct. In all cases, the purpose of the sources is to establish that the term is widespread throughout the media industry. Which it demonstrably is. Ravenswing 09:11, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

I don't dispute whether the term is in widespread use. What I am asking for is a something that defines what a "box office bomb" is. Is it just simply when a film takes in less many than it cost to make, or when it doesn't even take in half what it cost to make? Less than ten percent? Surely if a film makes almost what it cost to make then it can't be called "a bomb", so where does the line fall? 50%? 25%? 10%? On the list's AFD page, User:Mangojuice says less than 30%. Can that be sourced?
Again, I'm asking you to define "box office bomb" not prove the term in is widespread use. AlistairMcMillan 13:58, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
And I decline to play that game; it's a thinly disguised straw man argument. It is no more likely that a hard and fast ruling exists than there is a hard and fast definition of what constitutes "black" in terms of race; nevertheless, Wikipedia maintains numerous racially based lists, without AfDs being filed by editors demanding that such lists follow strict definitions and that such terms be rigidly defined. This article does a good job in discussing and sourcing the concept, and the list operates off of films where the domestic gross failed to meet the reported budgets. You are seeking rigidity which doesn't exist ... and which isn't required. Ravenswing 15:00, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
So basically the list article is a list of films that Wikipedia defines as box office bombs. And you don't see a problem with that? AlistairMcMillan 16:18, 28 March 2007 (UTC)
I see a list of films that follow a rigid criteria of failing to recoup their budgets, tagged with an appellation in widespread use and with a generally accepted meaning, and no, I have no problem with that. Ravenswing 16:51, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

Third Opinion My opinion in this case is simple:

  • A source for the definition is not needed, because it is clear from both Wiktionary and the use in over 40.000 google hits. ([1] - search minus Dramarama because they have an album of the same name.)
  • This does not mean one can clearly define a film as a box office bomb or not - flop is a much better term. A percentage of the total budget is an awkward definition - one could argue for an absolute number, or a percentage of budget divided by number of minutes in the film, or the number of people visiting the film, etc.
  • Conclusion: box office bomb is a subjective term that cannot be applied to any film by straightforward logical deducations - or: one will need to provide a source stating the picture in question is a box office bomb to list it on Wikipedia.
  • This is clearly connected to the AfD going on - please discuss on the appropiate page. (i.e.: the AfD page)

--User:Krator (t c) 20:27, 28 March 2007 (UTC)

If you have ever heard of the movie the Golden Compass, it is going to be a box-office bomb in my opinion. It's religious views are screwed, and many people have been offended. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:26, 10 December 2007 (UTC)


We need a less pixelated photo of the Cleopatra poster. 03:54, 29 April 2007 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Waterworld.jpg[edit]

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BetacommandBot 04:36, 20 July 2007 (UTC)


A PR agent from Gold Circle films has an objection to Slither being on this page, and keeps reverting this page.

Bottomline--> Slither tanked hardcore. This flop demolished Gold Circle Picture. They haven't made a picture since. The sources back it up.

'"Another case of a distributor claiming to simply be a gun for hire, Slither crawled to $3.9 million at 1,945 venues. A spokesman for Universal Pictures stressed that they released the horror comedy as
part of a deal with Gold Circle Films, which financed Slither as well as past movies White Noise and The Wedding Date."
"We were crushingly disappointed," said Paul Brooks, president of the film's producer, Gold Circle Films.
In fact, "Slither," which according to sources had a sticker price of $29.5 million, might have killed off the horror-comedy genre for the near future. —Preceding unsigned comment added by MartyArtyParty (talkcontribs) 16:47, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

Don't call us, we'll call you[edit]

The article has a section on "Examples of flops not being career-ending"; Quentin Tarantino could probably fill out most of this section. I think the article would benefit from a section on flops that were so extreme as to end the career of a director, producer, or actor, or at least smash their career into tiny fragments. The problem would be sourcing this stuff carefully. The most extreme and uncontroversial example I can think of is the big-budget 1981 film The Legend of the Lone Ranger, which starred Klinton Spilsbury in his one and only screen appearance. Michael Cimino's Heaven's Gate is another example, although he continued to work in Hollywood, and the film is mentioned in the article once already. Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze ended the career of George Pal. Perhaps there could also be a section on flops that ended a franchise, e.g. Doc Savage again, or the 1998 Godzilla. -Ashley Pomeroy (talk) 19:48, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Godzilla (1998) didn't end Godzilla at all. In America, Godzilla was ended by Godzilla 1985 (1985), which bombed/flopped/crashed/failed in the theater. Godzilla continued in Japan 'til 2004's Godzilla: Final Wars. Also, the Godzilla movie after Sony's Godzilla disavowed the "godzilla" in the film as a monster Americans misidentified for Godzilla. In Final Wars, Godzilla kills "tunahead", as he's called. In fact, he kills "tunahead" in matter of ten seconds. The reason, from what I've read, is that Final Wars was very expensive to produce, and most of the crew was Red Chinese, so Toho just didn't have the capital to continue, as Godzilla films weren't doing too great for a few years overall, in Japan. Breaking even, but nothing spectacular. You want sources, find 'em. Apple8800 (talk) 20:06, 19 July 2011 (UTC)

Image copyright problem with Image:Cleopatra sheet.jpg[edit]

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"lack of promotion" section very poor[edit]

The "lack of promotion" section

  • reads like a list
  • has no figures with the list items (actual dollar amounts)
  • ... and thus has no illustrating examples
  • the list is also completely unsourced

Unless these items are addressed, I think that entire section should be reduced to a single line.

What do others think?

brain (talk) 15:38, 11 June 2009 (UTC)

I disagree. Even if you don't list dollar amounts, the fact remains that some "high profile" films (e.g. The Hunger Games) are endlessly and ridiculously hyped, while others (e.g. Musical Chairs) are virtually ignored. AlbertSM (talk) 00:37, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Causes of a movie's failure section[edit]

It doesn't show a very well known cause on some good movies going bad... financially: the "film critics".

It is a well known fact that many film critics get paid to do good reviews even when a film is at its best, a pile of trash, even praising the work of the art department (CGI, special FX, etc), but avoiding to do a review on the actors performance or the film's plot.[neutrality is disputed] [citation needed]

Sadly, The "film critics" section will never be in the article, because of the lack of reliable sources, as the critic's business is a shady exchange of money. [neutrality is disputed]

The point being, why some good movies get a bad review, even when scholars gave good qualifications to the film's general structure? and when someone do some real research, finds that the reviews were bad, with no good reason, a very good example: Avatar, which received a ton of good reviews(based mostly on the FX department), but dismissed the reviews that showed the flaws in the plot, the acting and other criticism towards the film(possible plagiarism or even better: MULTIPLE PLAGIARISM).

I would like to see the film critics section, if someone found some sources to avoid "speed deletion" because the lack of sources.-- (talk) 05:43, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

This section of the discussion is based on highly offensive, potentially slanderous, and unprovable assumptions. AlbertSM (talk) 00:33, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

Major rewrite[edit]

I'd like to make my intention to completely rewrite this article known. As is today it's completely ridiculous. It doesn't cite a single source inn the (inherently subjective) definition section and cites are rare throughout. For what it's worth, box office bombs are generally not simply films that fail to regain their budgets; they must be notable failures. I'd love to see a discussion start here, but failing that I'm going to kick off a project here today or tomorrow. --Williamsburgland (talk) 17:58, 19 June 2012 (UTC)

Causes of a movie's failure[edit]

Isn't one of the causes of a movie's failure often that it's simply a bad movie? Of course that isn't a neutral POV, but the list should at least mention poor critical reception. (talk) 18:55, 12 August 2012 (UTC)

Swedish IW[edit]

The Swedish interwiki link has nothing to do wtih this article, it is a redirect about golf terms, can someone fix the problem if it appears again? Egon Eagle (talk) 12:58, 17 August 2012 (UTC)

How to parse description of financial failure?[edit]

Article as of 2014-09-03: "To earn this dubious distinction, the film must also fail to earn more than the reported cost of its production, distribution, and marketing by a wide margin." How is "fail to earn more than ... by a wide margin" to be parsed? Does it mean "fail, by a wide margin, to earn more than" (with "by a wide margin" modifying "fail" rather than "more"/"more than"), such that films that earn only slightly less than they cost to make (and all films more successful than those fitting that description) are excluded, or does it mean "fail to earn more, by a wide margin, than" (with "by a wide margin" modifying "more" rather than "fail"), such that films that earn only slightly more than they cost to make (and all films less successful than those fitting that description) are included? Neither interpretation is clearly better (or at least neither is Pareto-better): The former would make more sense from a logical/linguistic perspective in that it better aligns with the intuition that there exists a practically effective distinction between the designation "[mere] financial failure" and the (presumably stronger and more restrictive) designation "bomb," but the latter might make more sense from a business perspective in that to be successful from the studio's perspective a film needs to "pull more than its own weight" in order to help cover fixed costs (overhead, pay for studio executives, etc.) and costs associated with films whose production is never completed (e.g., payments for option rights on scripts from which films are never produced). (talk) 23:43, 3 September 2014 (UTC)

Is Batman & Robin a box office flop[edit]

Is Batman & Robin has a flop or not a box office flop? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:0:8500:472:69A8:D4E4:BDBE:5D50 (talk) 23:27, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

"Outside Influences"[edit]

Disagree with the FIFA film being sited as outside influences, causing the failure of the film.

Firstly, A film about Football in America is a hard sell at the best of times let alone when it's a documentary drama, on top of which I would like to know how much advertising, how big an open this film had, if it was only at one or two cinemas, it was poor marketing, not 'Outside Influences'

Id wannant a guess that that was the director of the film, putting it in, trying to salvage some pride. (talk) 01:27, 19 July 2015 (UTC)

No mention of Cleopatra? And the lede...[edit]

In the Studios pushed into financial trouble section, why is there no mention of Cleopatra? That movie very nearly wrecked 20th Century Fox, as it sucked up so much of their money, Fox went months and months with nothing else in production (except for The Longest Day, whose eventual release saved Fox from extinction.) It got so bad that they stop paying for landscaping, and nothing says you're in deep kimchi like having weeds growing in the parking lot.

The lede should also be rewritten. A bomb is not the same thing as a flop. A movie that simply doesn't perform as expected is flop, but one that fails spectacularly is a bomb. The "hype" clause is missing a word or two so its meaning isn't clear. The second sentence, "Generally, any film for which the production and marketing costs exceed the combined revenue recovered after release is considered to have 'bombed'," is just wrong, as any means that every film that loses money is a bomb, which is clearly wrong. The second paragraph (presumably written by a different person(s)) then goes on to contradict the first paragraph. __209.179.0.121 (talk) 17:52, 13 November 2015 (UTC)