Jason Bateman Admits People Weren't Exactly Clamoring For Horrible Bosses 2

Compared to its predecessor, Horrible Bosses 2 did supremely poorly at the box office. Despite costing $7 million more than the first Horrible Bosses, the sequel wound up bringing in only half the amount of money. It's not exactly hard to figure out why this happened, but Jason Bateman explained it rather perfectly in a recent interview: not every successful movie needs a follow-up.

The actor was recently a guest on the Marc Maron WTF Podcast, and it was this venue that he chose to vent about what went wrong with Horrible Bosses 2. Describing the box office results of the sequel as "garbage," Bateman put in his two cents about why the movie failed, and he put it rather bluntly:

A lot of people saw the first one, but there are plenty of films that made a lot of money where no one is interested in seeing another one... People just weren’t interested in seeing another one. ‘We saw the first one, we had fun, and I don’t need to go see a second one.'

He jokingly added that the reality is that it's all the audience's fault that Horrible Bosses 2 actually happened, saying

Don’t go out and buy a bunch of tickets for the first one unless you want a second one, cause we don’t have any discipline in this town.

Before you start snapping back at Jason Bateman and saying that he has no right to complain since he took the job, in the interview he does admit that the paycheck was very much a motivating factor, and that "Everyone’s gettin’ paid. It’s a freebie." But don't be mistaken and think that this just meant that he phoned in his performance, as he went on to explain that it's always the intention to make a film as good as it can be.

We can’t just make it suck. Everyone’s gonna know it’s a layup, but let’s at least try to make it hold up to some cynical scrutiny

Horrible Bosses 2 was unsuccessful in that venture. The comedy sequel has a not-so-great 35% rating on Rotten Tomatoes - which, funny enough, is also about half of it's predecessor. By the end of its run, the star-studded sequel managed to make only $54 million domestically, and was all-around considered a flop.

As Jason Bateman goes on to say in the interview, his career hasn't really been hurt by the movie, and he's actually currently in a film, Joel Edgerton's The Gift, that is doing solid business at the box office despite having an incredibly small $5 million budget (it's also been earning great reviews). The lesson to take away here is simple: Hollywood just doesn't need to make sequels to every single success story that's produced.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.