POLL: Watchmen… How will it do at the box office?
How will Watchmen do at the box office is a topic we’ve been debating over at THE UNIQUE GEEK and my friend EDP’s blog, I DON’T READ MY BLOG EITHER. I think everyone agrees the movie will be great, but the questions are how will it be received by the general public and will it make any money.
How Will it be Received by the General Public?
My opinion is that geeks everywhere will praise this movie. I think intellectuals will praise the movie. I think the general American public either won’t care/won’t see it, or won’t “get it” if they do watch it. Superhero movies are fairly common nowadays, so people are beginning to ignore them. Here come the Watchmen, a superhero movie composed of superheroes that the general public has never heard of. That could be a hindrance in getting the general public to come out for it. Also, there is SO much merchandise out there for Watchmen right now. With all the marketing and merchandising, I’m afraid the general public is expecting the next Superman or Spider-Man. As we all know, it certainly won’t be that. Finally, I think the general public will struggle to reconcile the spandex outfits with the heavy subject matter.
How Much Money Will it Make at the Box Office?
I think Watchmen is likely to perform very well the first couple weeks, then quickly fall off. Besides the factors I mentioned above, there is the issue that the film is rated “R”. That will seriously restrict those that can see the movie legally. I’m sure tons of under-17 kids will see it, but will they pay for Street Fighter and simply sneak into Watchmen? That won’t help Watchmen’s profits.
For some perspective, here are some other comic book movie box office grosses. For further information on superhero movie box office returns click here (worldwide gross) and click here (US gross).
- Dark Knight – $997 million worldwide gross; $812 million profit
- Spider-Man 3 – $890 million worldwide gross; $632 million profit
- Iron Man – $571 million worldwide gross; $431 million profit
- Fantastic Four – $330 million worldwide gross; $230 million profit
- Daredevil – $179 million worldwide gross; $101 million profit
- Hellboy II – $99 million worldwide gross; $14 million profit margin
Out of this list, I think Daredevil and Hellboy II are probably the most applicable films to compare to Watchmen. I believe Hellboy II had more advertising than Watchmen has had, and yet it only made $99 million. Watchmen does have the phenomenally-selling graphic novel right now to help them out. So my guess it that Watchmen will gross somewhere around $150 million.
If I’m right, that might not be good news for Warner Brothers. After all, we know they’ve reported that Watchmen cost over $100 million to make. Typically those types of figures are understated, so they probably spent more. Also, I don’t know what happened in that FOX lawsuit, but Warner Brothers may have to share some portion of their profits from Watchmen with FOX.
I honestly hope I’m wrong. I want this movie to succeed. I want it to make a gagillion dollars and sweep the Oscars… I just don’t think either is going to happen.
I will say that it’s a safe bet the DVD releases will be a HUGE success. Geeks have proven time and again that we can make DVD sales go through the roof. I also think this will be one of the more illegally downloaded movies. Geeks are bad about that too.
What do you think? Vote in the new poll here at ONCE UPON A GEEK. How much do you think Watchmen will gross worldwide?