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‘The Marvels’: A Marvel Misstep – Lowest-Grossing MCU Film in History

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In the ever-expanding galaxy of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), where superheroes soar to incredible heights, ‘The Marvels’ has unfortunately found itself plummeting to record lows at the box office. With stars like Brie Larson and Iman Vellani at the helm, this sequel seemed poised for greatness, but as it turns out, even superheroes can’t always save the day.

The numbers tell a grim story. ‘The Marvels’ stumbled out of the gate with a record-low opening, setting the stage for a rollercoaster ride of disappointment. After its much-anticipated debut, it quickly became apparent that this film was on a collision course with the bottom of the MCU’s financial barrel.

As the dust settles, ‘The Marvels’ finds itself in a nail-biting race for the third spot at the domestic box office, competing against Eli Roth’s horror flick, ‘Thanksgiving.’ The forecast isn’t sunny, as the film is expected to rake in a mere $10 million, marking a jaw-dropping 78% drop in revenue – yet another inglorious record for the MCU. To put this in perspective, it garnered a paltry $46 million during its opening weekend domestically, with a worldwide haul of $110 million in the same time frame. Now, after ten days in theaters, its global earnings stand at a meager $161 million.

For context, consider that ten previous MCU films grossed more than $161 million in their domestic opening weekends alone. ‘Avengers: Endgame,’ the juggernaut of them all, nearly matched that number in a single day domestically, amassing nearly $160 million on its opening day. Even ‘Captain Marvel,’ with Brie Larson’s titular character, pulled in an impressive $153 million during its domestic opening weekend and ultimately soared to over $1.1 billion globally. However, ‘The Marvels’ seems destined to carve its name in history as the MCU’s lowest-grossing film to date, a stark contrast to a franchise that boasts nearly $30 billion in global box office earnings.

The tail-end of the MCU’s financial spectrum is currently occupied by ‘The Incredible Hulk’ ($265 million worldwide), ‘Captain America: The First Avenger’ ($370 million), ‘Black Widow’ ($379 million, despite a simultaneous streaming release), and ‘Eternals’ ($401 million in the midst of the 2021 pandemic). The pinnacle remains ‘Avengers: Endgame,’ which ascended to an unprecedented $2.78 billion globally in 2019. Since then, the series has experienced its fair share of hits and misses in the post-Endgame/post-pandemic era. Disney’s intensified focus on streaming content, coupled with a growing sense of familiarity among viewers, has dealt significant blows both in theaters (‘Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania’) and on Disney+ (‘Secret Invasion’). The MCU, while still capable of delivering hits, has felt the strain of high expectations and evolving audience tastes.

The financial woes of ‘The Marvels’ are compounded by its colossal production cost, reportedly exceeding $250 million. To break even, the film needs to rake in a staggering $700 million worldwide, a goal that now appears insurmountable given its lackluster performance and mixed reviews. Directed by Nia DaCosta, the film currently holds a borderline “fresh” rating of 62% on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes and received a less-than-stellar B- CinemaScore from its opening-day audiences.

As the dust settles, one question remains: will ‘The Marvels’ become the first MCU film to fail to reach the $100 million mark domestically? The answers will unfold in the coming weeks, but for now, this unexpected twist in the MCU’s box office saga serves as a stark reminder that even superheroes can have their off days. Stay tuned to FilmSweep for the latest updates on the fate of ‘The Marvels.’

‘The Marvels’ Synopsis:
In ‘The Marvels,’ Carol Danvers’ powers become intertwined with those of Kamala Khan and Monica Rambeau, forcing these formidable heroes to unite in a cosmic battle to save the universe.

Release Date: November 10, 2023
Director: Nia DaCosta
Cast: Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Zawe Ashton, Iman Vellani

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about box office disappointment

What is ‘The Marvels’?

‘The Marvels’ is a superhero sequel in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) featuring characters like Carol Danvers, Kamala Khan, and Monica Rambeau.

Why did ‘The Marvels’ perform poorly at the box office?

Several factors contributed to its disappointing performance, including a record-low opening, intense competition, and mixed reviews. Additionally, the MCU has faced challenges in the post-Endgame era with evolving audience preferences and Disney’s focus on streaming content.

How does ‘The Marvels’ compare to other MCU films financially?

‘The Marvels’ is on track to become the lowest-grossing film in MCU history, with earnings far below the franchise’s previous successes like ‘Avengers: Endgame’ and ‘Captain Marvel.’

What is the budget for ‘The Marvels’?

The film reportedly had a production cost exceeding $250 million, which adds to the pressure for it to perform well at the box office.

Will ‘The Marvels’ be profitable?

Breaking even would require ‘The Marvels’ to earn around $700 million worldwide, a challenging goal given its current performance. Its financial outlook is uncertain.

What are the critical and audience reception of ‘The Marvels’?

The film holds a review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes score of approximately 62%, indicating mixed reviews. It also received a CinemaScore of B- from opening day audiences.

Could ‘The Marvels’ become the first MCU film to not reach $100 million domestically?

It remains to be seen, but the film’s dwindling box office numbers raise questions about its domestic earnings and its place in MCU history.

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