Friday, June 14, 2024

UPDATED “Shazam 2” $125 Mil Bust at Box Office Even with No Competition, Star’s Perceived Anti-Vax Tweets and Jordan Peterson Comments on Joe Rogan Show Didn’t Help


SUNDAY MORNING: “Shazam: Fury of the Gods” made $30.5 million for the weekend, a low for Warner’s/DC and far below the original film. You have to think that there was more going on here than “bad marketing” or the film wasn’t as good as the first one. The lead actor speaking out and aligning himself with right wing positions did this film in. Period.

SATURDAY MORNING: It’s a no go for “Shazam 2.”

Warner Bros’ sequel to the surprise 2019 hit had a very disappointing take off on Friday. Including Thursday previews, total for the opening was just over $11 million. Another $16 mil for Saturday and Sunday won’t bring it to $30 mil for the weekend even if kids are dumped into theaters.

The original “Shazam” took in $56 million, so the fall off is spectacular. Was it something star Zachary Levi said? His anti-vax stand and otherwise right wing positioning, which he expressed on Joe Rogan’s ultra conservative podcast, obviously didn’t help.

What happened? Levi was a benign figure in showbiz. He was popular from the “Chuck” TV series, from “Mrs. Maisel,” and a nice turn on Broadway in a musical. Maybe he knew the new Warner’s brass weren’t continuing with a third “Shazam.” He certainly, as used to say, hanged himself on his own petard.

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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