A look at some of the winners and losers at the box office in 2017:
The biggest successes:
Global box office: $US821 million ($A1.1 billion)
Production budget: $US120 million ($A168 million)
The collaboration between Gal Gadot and director Patty Jenkins provided a fresh, light-hearted look at the superhero genre and became the one unqualified success in Warner Bros-DC Entertainment’s efforts to compete with the Marvel-Disney universe. It has already set Wonder Woman 2 for November 2, 2019.
Global box office: $US138 million ($A193 million)
Production budget: $US19 million ($A27 million)
Universal’s raucous and joyous Girls Trip reinvigorated the road-trip genre and became a serious breakout hit as an R-rated comedy – an area which had seen plenty of stumbles in recent years, with nothing resembling a major adult comedy success since Amy Schumer’s Trainwreck and Melissa McCarthy’s Spy two years earlier.
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Global box office: $US155 million ($A217 million) (still in theatres)
Production budget: $US20 million ($A28 million)
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the year, the Jacob Tremblay tearjerker opened on November 17-19 with Lionsgate expecting a $US9 million ($A13 million) debut – and then took in $US27.6 million ($A38.6 million). Audiences embraced the film’s message of kindness and inclusion following an extensive social media campaign.
Global box office: $US695 million ($A973 million)
Production cost: $US35 million ($A49 million)
“It“ is the highest-grossing horror film ever and is regarded as one of the best Stephen King movie adaptations. Warner Bros and New Line have already scheduled It: Chapter 2 for September 6, 2019.
BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
Global box office: $US1.26 billion ($A1.76 billion)
Production cost: $US160 million ($A224 million)
Beauty and the Beast is the best example of why Disney continues to draw on its massive library of successful animated properties and transform them in to live-action features. It’s also a casting triumph with Emma Watson establishing herself as a major star after being Hermione Granger in the eight Harry Potter movies.
STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI
Global box office: $US536 million ($A750 million) (still playing)
Production cost: $US250 million ($A350 million)
The Last Jedi notched the second-highest US opening weekend and the fifth-highest globally – even before a China release. It’s the ninth film in the iconic franchise, which shows no signs of running out of steam any time soon, thanks to a marketing campaign that effectively tapped into the massive fan base. Five months from now, Disney-Lucasfilm will again test fans’ Force fervor with the Han Solo spinoff on May 25 .
The biggest flops:
Global box office: $US64 million ($A90 million)
Production cost: $US125 million ($A175 million)
In September, 2016, Viacom announced that it was taking “a programing impairment charge” of $US115 million ($A161 million) for losses from this Paramount live-action CGI adventure – four months before it even opened the movie, which had originally been set to open in 2015. Paramount had announced the film in 2013 as the launch of a franchise.
KING ARTHUR: LEGEND OF THE SWORD
Global box office: $US148 million ($A207 million)
Production budget: $US175 million ($A245 million)
Warner Bros had been attempting to develop a King Arthur project for many years – first as an Excalibur remake and then as a possible six-film franchise set in the Arthurian world. Shooting began in 2015 with Charlie Hunnam starring but the original release date of July 22, 2016, was then delayed four times. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword drew only $US39 million ($A55 million) in the US and international markets provided little aid.
VALERIAN AND THE CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS
Global box office: $US225 million ($A315 million)
Production budget: $US180 million ($A252 million)
Luc Besson’s ambitious Valerian is the most expensive independently financed movie in history. Rival studios and insiders estimated the film needed to make at least $US400 million ($A560 million) worldwide to climb into the black and justify a sequel.
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THE DARK TOWER
Global box office: $US111 million ($A155 million)
Production cost: $US60 million ($A84 million)
The science fantasy western, based on Stephen King’s novel series, had been in development for a decade, first with J.J. Abrams, then with Ron Howard and finally with Nicolaj Arcel in multiple attempts to turn King’s sprawling narrative into a conventional movie. Critics derided The Dark Tower for being difficult to understand.
Global box office: $US207 million ($A290 million)
Production cost: $US120 million ($A168 million)
When a film’s release date is delayed four times, it’s a red flag for moviegoers – especially since the delays resulted in the film being opened, unfortunately, on the heels of massive hurricanes hitting Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico. The premise of seeing the world devastated by a series of weather-related disasters probably didn’t seem like that much fun to moviegoers when parts of the world were actually being devastated by a series of weather-related disasters.