The thriller opened in 3,049 theaters on January 31. Per Exhibitor Relations Co., this weekend, The Rhythm Section will be screening in just 94 across the whole country. And that’s after suffering the indignity of setting a new record as the movie with the worst wide-opening of all time at just $2.8 million. In other words, it could already be nearing a mercifully quick end to its domestic run.
To date, The Rhythm Section has grossed approximately $5.8 million against its $50 million budget. That makes it a bonafide box office bomb. And clearly, Paramount Pictures doesn’t see much of a chance for it to find new legs in theaters. Maybe it will enjoy a second life during a home release. (There’s no harm in looking for a silver lining, right?)
What went wrong for the film? Basically everything, if we’re being honest. The Rhythm Section faced a lengthy delay in production after Blake Lively injured her hand during a stunt gone wrong. It also had its release pushed back multiple times. When it finally hit theaters, most critics weren’t exactly impressed, leveling it with just a 27% average on Rotten Tomatoes. Moviegoers were equally unenthused, if its C+ grade on CinemaScore is any indication.
Despite an overall lackluster response, Blake Lively has been praised for her performance in The Rhythm Section. And that’s good news for the actress, as the film marks one of her most ambitious roles to date. She took an active role in promoting the thriller, trying to entice fans with a mysterious social media campaign. One of the more notable elements of the film was the fact that her character undergoes several big transformations in her appearance -- and that was something that helped raise awareness about the film as well. But obviously not enough.
As of yet, Blake Lively doesn’t seem to have any post-The Rhythm Section projects up her sleeve. But all isn’t lost. In The Shallows, the actress proved she has what it takes to lead a film successfully -- even when she’s basically the only person on camera. So more than anything, she just needs to find the right project.
There is also no word as to what the next steps are in The Rhythm Section’s sad story. Paramount Pictures could rush to put it on streaming services, but it has yet to announce an official date when it will be available for home viewing.