Sunday, June 16, 2024

“Winter’s Tale” is the First Gigantic Box Office Flop of 2014 with $7.7 Mil Weekend


That didn’t take long. “Winter’s Tale,” directed (and written and produced) by Akiva Goldsman, is the first big studio flop of 2014.

On Friday night, the Colin Farrell starrer took in a measly $3.6 million in 2,965 theaters. With about a $9 million total Shock: Just a $7.7 million three day weekend makes the movie based on Mark Helprin’s 1983 novel a financial throwaway.

Thanks to numbers inadvertently supplied by the MPAA in a press release we know that “Winter’s Tale” spent at least $70 million just shooting in New York City. Its total budget would come to around $150 million. And I may be underestimating that figure.

With almost all negative reviews, “Winter’s Tale” will barely make it to $50 million. Thus it will join all the big studio failures from last year, and be a trendsetter for this one. Goldsman, a talented screenwriter (“A Beautiful Mind”), will probably not direct another film of this magnitude again for a long time.

How “Winter’s Tale” got so out of control might be an interesting story. But basically, it’s an artless endeavor. It’s also a case of “more is more.” For some reason, Goldsman thought jamming in everything but the kitchen sink, as well as a “surprise” cameo by Will Smith, would sell the movie. I still have little idea what was going on, and I read the book.

For Warner Bros., it’s just a write off. It’s not like they don’t have hits. “The Lego Movie” is number 1 and just raking in movie. Plus, everyone loves it. You can’t have everything.

“Winter’s Tale” will finish at number 7 or so for the weekend. It’s going to wind up doing half has well as the miserable “Endless Love.” And that’s saying something.

To quote Russell Crowe’s character in the movie, “Shit happens.”



Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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