Monday, June 17, 2024

Hollywood Box Office Woes Worsen as Three Potential Flops Are Set for Friday Release


Hollywood may never forget the weekend of June 16, 2017. Tinseltown box office, already down, is heading to three sizable flops all opening at the same. Major stars and directors are involved, too.

I guess the biggest problem out there is “The Book of Henry,” from “Jurassic World” directed Colin Trevorrow. There have been few screenings and no reviews. (UPDATE Really bad ones are trickling in.) Star Naomi Watts did her publicity in May and won’t appear at Wednesday’s L.A. Film Festival premiere. (She’s filming in Prague.) “Room” prodigy Jacob Tremblay co-stars. “Henry” is from Focus Features’ old regime, so if it fails it won’t matter that much for them. They have a lot of hits coming this fall. But Trevorrow is scheduled to direct “Star Wars 9.”

Second on the list is “All Eyez on Me,” Lions Gate’s biography of rapper Tupac Shakur. This movie is also largely unscreened for critics. I’m told reviewers are embargoed from publishing their pieces until Saturday, so as not to warn away Tupac fans from opening night. “It’s like a Lifetime movie,” one observer told me. John Singleton quit this movie early on, if you remember, because of too much interference. Now music video director Benny Boom is making his feature debut.

Third is expected to be Scarlett Johansson and Kate McKinnon in “Rough Night,” from Columbia Pictures. There’s an embargo until Wednesday noon for reviews, but the word is out. Things don’t look good.

If all three fail bigly– which seems to be the case– the path will be clear for two other new releases with mediocre reviews— “Cars 3” and “47 Meters Down.”

Will moviegoers just return again to “Wonder Woman”? Or will all these poor offerings further add to the deterioration of theater-going? It’s getting easier and easier to stay home and watch movies. Very disappointing.

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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