’47 Ronin’ A Complete Box Office Disaster

    January 13, 2014
    Meaghan Ellis
    Comments are off for this post.

With notable Blockbuster movies like The Matrix series on his filmography, actor Keanu Reeves‘ return to the big screen was held to high expectations. Unfortunately, his efforts were botched with the release of his latest film 47 Ronin, as it was a complete box office disaster.

However, the problematic factors that contributed to the film’s disastrous box office sales had absolutely nothing to due with the quality of the film. In essence, marketing, advertisement and film production delays and cost were probably the dominant factors in the film’s downfall, reports Business Insider

47 Ronin, which was released Dec. 25, was actually on troubled water even before it hit theaters. In truth, the film was originally scheduled to be released in November of 2012. But unfortunately a number of production delays forced the film to be pushed back several times. So, in an effort to avoid yet another setback, the December release date was set. However, that was probably the worst decision that could have been made.

The month of December was filled blockbuster, Golden Globe Award-winning films like The Wolf of Wall Street and American Hustle. The release of such highly lauded films caused 47 Ronin to be overshadowed. Then, to add insult to injury, films like The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug and Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues were also among the list of popular December releases vying for the attention of viewers.

With so many releases, it’s probably safe to say the film got lost in the shuffle. But, from another perspective, marketing and advertisement could also be a strong contributing factor to the failure of the film. Unlike most of the other big releases, 47 Ronin wasn’t advertised as heavily as the blockbuster films that broke box office records in December.

Then, last but definitely not least, there’s the staggering production costs. A number of media outlets report that the project was filmed on a production budget of approximately $175 million. However, The Wrap reports that the fantasy action film would have to make a whopping $500 million profit just to break even.

The Matrix Reloaded, which garnered a jaw-dropping $742,128,461 was the only film Reeves has ever starred in to generate more than $500 million. So, suggesting 47 Ronin would make such a profit was quite far fetched. The publication also reported that even Universal had reservations about the credibility of the film, even suggesting that it would fail just days before the release.

The most disheartening part about the film is that it may have been more successful had it not been released during the holiday season.

Image via Facebook | 47 Ronin

  • http://webpronews Tom Absolon

    It’s really a shame, 47 Ronin is actually very entertaining and enough of a quality story line that I think most people would enjoy. I do believe the lack of promotion of the movie by Universal Studios and the terrible release time of Christmas is truly what hurt this movie. If you get a chance GO SEE!!!!

    • butt

      thats because most Americans are brain dead

  • John S

    Of course, the 11% Rotten Tomatoes score had absolutely nothing to do with it

  • Argonath

    And of course, a movie about ABSCAM, which 80% of Americans have never heard of, and 90% or more don’t really understand what did transpire won awards because ‘A-listers’ appeared in it.

    47 RONIN should have been a story about 47 gay samurai… then Hollywood would have automatically praised it and made it the Academy Away winner.

  • lindy

    I went to see it in the best possible setting, a brand new deluxe cinema, three d, stadium seating and atmosphere. I found the movie beautifully filmed and delightful to the senses, but carried a very thin acting ability, notably from the lead, Keanu. He was unbelieveable, and gave an anemic attempt. Some of the other leads held up, but in the end it was a thumbs down from me.

  • Josh Dull

    No one in the 21st Century wants to see “Mighty Whitey: The Movie”.

  • Harry

    Spectacular movies indeed. Fantastic Japanese eye for detail. Keanu played his role as half breed flawlessly. (And it’s not your typical stupid American movie, boy gets the girl, everything blows up). I walked out if the cinema felling excited and sad at the same time. Two completely opposite emotions forming a memorable movie experience.

  • sharon

    I went to see this the day after Christmas. I am very sorry it did not do better. In my opinion it was worth the money to see it on a big screen. It is not perfect, but I thought the acting was superb and the CGI was amazing!

  • Dan

    I’m actually very passed I wanted to see this movie really bad but my local theater only had one 3:50 PM one 6:45 PM and one 10:15 PM showing making it next to impossible to go see unless you plan your day around which I just did not have the time to do in the short weeks it was in the box office why other movies had several time slots and had been in theaters for way longer. Highly disappointed by this. Movie looked great.

  • Louise

    If nothing else I learnt something new about Japanese culture, I loved this movie and like most knew nothing about it but the star… And that was my draw card, yet I still would have seen it if I really knew what it was about because it was interesting. The acting by the lead role was very matrix no even less at times which hurt the performance but would still see it again in a heart beat … Should go see it on the big screen worth the money