John Carter has been hyped and re-hyped for months, including recent promotionals touting it as the first major blockbuster of the year. Turns out it isn't even in the top four biggest openings of the year so far.
At a cost of $250 million John Carter ranks among the most expensive movies made. That makes the weak $30 million it banked for its opening weekend that much more humbling. Adding insult to injury: it finished second place after last weekend's top entry The Lorax.
It's the box office equivalent of a kick in the groin for director Andrew Stanton who enjoyed major success with this first two movies, Pixar's WALL-E and Finding Nemo. His first entry in live-action film has barely scratched $100 million world-wide, making it a certain fincancial flop.
The Lorax continued to soar, adding $39 million to its now $121 million domestic haul, and becoming the highest grossing movie of the year so far. Many expected John Carter to eventually move into that spot, but now it looks like Lorax will get to the hold the limelight until teenagers and adults alike turn out in two weeks to make The Hunger Games 2012's first big box office bonanza.
Horror flick Silent House lived up to its name, opening quietly in fourth place with just $7 million. But it's still a better showing than Eddie Murphy's A Thousand Words which slumped into a sixth place debut at $6 million. That makes three Murphy-headlined movies in a row opening under $10 million. Meet Dave in 2008 and the subsequent Imagine That in 2009 both bowed in at $5 million. Murphy's ensemble roles in Shrek Forever After in 2010 and Tower Heist in 2011 fared far better, leaving the conclusion clear: Murphy needs to stop making movies that star himself, and stick with being a team player.
For the full weekend top ten, check out the chart below: