Saturday, April 20, 2024

UPDATE “Charlie’s Angels” Ends Its Ignominious Run After 26 Days, with Less Than $18 Mil: Producer Leonard Goldberg Dead at 85


UPDATED ON DEC 18, 2019: I didn’t realize that “Charlie’s Angels” producer Leonard Goldberg, a force in Hollywood and TV, passed away recently at age 85. He had great successes. It’s too bad that the failure of the new movie coincided with his passing. Condolences to his family and friends. He will be sorely missed.

EARLIER The 2019 version of “Charlie’s Angels” has ended its run in theaters. The numbers come to 26 days, $17.6 million US. The international numbers were $38.2 million for a total of $55.8 million.  Official budget was $48 million. This doesn’t mean the even broke even. It lost almost everything.

There was of course the original TV series in the 70s. Then were two hit “Charlie’s Angels” movies before this one, in 2000 and 2003. Then there was a revival TV series in 2011, which died on arrival. No matter how you look at it, this was a franchise, and a valuable one. So now what?

This “Charlie’s Angels” had no life to it, no fun, no sexiness. That was what the show was all about, smart ladies balancing personal and professional lives. It was also a little tongue in cheek by the time it reached the 2003 movie.

Now Sony and executive producer Leonard Goldberg’s company, which still owns the title and is 85 years old, have to figure out a way to save the Charles Townsend Agency from going under. Obviously, they should wait a minute to let this carcass be buried or cremated. And then do a re-think.

The next “Charlie’s Angels” movie has to have Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Kate McKinnon, and Maya Rudolph. It also needs Jaclyn Smith, Cheryl Ladd, and Kate Jackson. It needs to tie back to what everyone loved about the original series. And it needs romance. Overtly old fashioned romance, updated. This version felt sterile. And it needs glamour. (Also, Lucy Liu.)

So for now, “Charlie’s Angels” will take a needed nap. And it’s best just to forget this ever happened. But for Sony, which also had a flop reviving “Men in Black,” maybe some new attitudes and possible team leaders on these things.

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.

Read more

In Other News