This weekend, I saw the Green Lantern movie with a few friends, and as luck would have it, so did Pierre. We all agreed that as movies about superheroes go, Green Lantern was better than expected and overall very enjoyable. It should go a long way towards restoring fans faith in DC/Time Warner's ability to make big budget comic book movies that don't star Batman.
If they actually decide to make any more. And yeah, I know the before the credits scene sets us up for a sequel but I wouldn't go clicking on Fandango just yet. Let me explain...
The first weekend box office tally is looking to be in the neighborhood of $52 million. Below both Thor AND X-men First Class (which performed the worst of any of the X-men movies in its own first weekend.) Rumored budget, including marketing, for GL was $300 million, of which $150 was just production cost alone. That Green Lantern failed to outperform either of those movies is going to chaff someone's butt at Time Warner. However, the sad reality is that all of those movies did worse than Bryan Singer's X-men movie when you adjust for inflation. And Singer's movie didn't have the benefit of overpriced 3D tickets to help boost box office numbers.
And there's the rub. If Green Lantern had come out in 2001, after the first X-men movie and prior to Sam Raimi's Spider-man, then there would be partying in the streets on Time Warner Drive. As it is, I suppose there will be some mumbling about performing to expectations followed by a lightning round of finger pointing. I suspect the early loser will be the Marketing department with later blame placed on the film itself.
Is that fair? I don't really think so. As one of my friends said after the movie; he's sad that he now lives in a world where we know and (to a degree) care about the box office numbers of movies. It taints a movie in a way that causes audiences to steer away from what would otherwise be an enjoyable experience. One wonders if Americans had grown up with the knowledge that the Wizard of Oz was a box office failure, would it be the cultural icon it is today? Waterworld says no.
Bottom line, this doesn't bode well for future DC movies and definitely scotches my plans to make a Diamond Jack movie. ;)
Speaking of Diamond Jack, enjoy his first appearance here in the pages of Slam Bang Comics 1 from Fawcett.
Have a great day!