Since Hollywood began, movies have always run the grand risk of flopping. Not just flopping but super-flopping. Movies that have huge hopes of being mega successes only to collapse majorly due to various factors, from bad marketing to poor reviews to just being no good at all. As time has gone on and budgets getting larger and larger, the risk of mega-flops grows far larger. In 1990, The Bonfire of the Vanities was considered a massive debacle for grossing only $15 million against a $50 million budget which for the time was outrageous. Today, of course, that’s considered low-budget as Hollywood has gone for “bigger is better” approach which just leads to more risk of movies becoming sheer disasters.
Some stand larger than others, usually for a big blockbuster. True, the famous flops of Town & Country and Evan Almighty were notable but those were cases of small comedies that just got ridiculously out of hand, not a blockbuster by any means. No, this list is for the movies that were intended to be big-budget smash hits and instead collapsed big time in losses that rocked their studios and set back careers. Some of these may not seem as huge in budget terms at first but when adjusted for inflation, you can see how much bigger a deal they truly are. Read and marvel at how the dreams of so many stars and executives could turn into nightmares that dashed so many movies to the side.
Estimated Loss: $75,681,839
19 The Nutcracker in 3D
Estimated Loss: $81,910,521
Estimated Loss: $82,585,960
17 Treasure Planet
Estimated Loss: $85,210,943
16 Jupiter Ascending
Estimated Loss: $87,056,139
15 The Alamo
Estimated Loss: $94,090,020
14 Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within
Estimated Loss: $94,434,085
13 The Adventures of Pluto Nash
Estimated Loss: $96,448,014
Estimated Loss: $96,533,564
Estimated Loss: $100,365,257
10 Jack the Giant Slayer
Estimated Loss: $86,156,199—101,156,199
9 The Fall of the Roman Empire
Estimated Loss: ~$106,000,000 (adjusted for inflation)
A case of a budget that may seem okay but when adjusted for inflation, it’s one of the biggest bombs imaginable. A stand-out of the “swords and sandals” era of the 1950s and ‘60s, it boasted a great cast of Christopher Plummer, Sophia Loren, Alec Guinness and Omar Sharif and excellent detail and many reviews have noted it as far better than most of its ilk. Sadly, that wasn’t enough for moviegoers in 1964 as the film’s budget reached a then-unheard of $20 million and while much of it is on screen, it still stands as a very costly disaster. When adjusted for inflation, its losses are close to $125 million and while the movie is regarded as something of a classic by critics today, it didn’t help Samuel Bronston at the time and helped kill the entire massive epic of the day, a shame considering it’s an actually good flick.
Estimated Loss: $90,837,890—114,837,890
7 The Lone Ranger
Estimated Loss: $94,748,943—119,748,943
6 Heaven’s Gate
Estimated Loss: ~$121,000,000 (adjusted for inflation)
5 John Carter
Estimated Loss: $121,630,450
4 Mars Needs Moms
Estimated Loss: $130,503,621
3 Cutthroat Island
Estimated Loss: $137,488,885 (adjusted for inflation)
2 47 Ronin
Estimated Loss: $149,518,763
1 The 13th Warrior
Estimated Loss: $97,896,514—182,838,584 (adjusted for inflation)
Directed by John McTiernan and based on a novel by Michael Crichton, this 1999 movie hit several delays which is natural for a historical action film. Only they became more and more common with bad weather and larger budget needed to cover constant rewrites. Antonio Banderas played an Arab poet forced to join a group of Vikings battling other enemies with the movie shot in 1997 for an intended 1998 release. However, test audiences didn’t react well to the footage shown and thus various reshoots and re-edits were made, each one driving the picture’s budget up toward a reported $160 million. It ended up grossing $60 million worldwide and while the exact numbers have never been confirmed, it’s been estimated its losses could reach $130 million, a massive collapse that still stands as tops in blockbusters that failed to succeed.
Leave A Comment
Looking for an AD FREE EXPERIENCE on TheRichest?Get Your Free Access Now!