Weekend B.O. July 25-27 (What Happened To ‘Herc’?)

Weekend B.O. July 25-27 (What Happened To 'Herc'?)

The common wisdom was that "Hercules" with Dwayne Johnson
would easily beat the other major release this weekend – the sci-fi thriller "Lucy," with Scarlett Johansson. But it was the opposite, with "Lucy" taking in a very
surprising $44 million, while "Hercules" came in a distant second, with $29

So what happened to "Hercules"? 3 possible answers:

1 – Lack of confidence: For a big budget, potential “tent-pole”
summer movie, it sure looked like Paramount didn’t have a lot of confidence in
the film. The pre-release marketing campaign was virtually nil, and
really didn’t go into high gear until last week. Compare that to "Lucy," which Universal
had been basically promoting at least a month before its release, with TV ads
and on the internet.

Also Paramount held back on advance press and preview screenings of "Hercules," until literally the Thursday night before
the film’s Friday release. Whenever that happens, it’s almost a guarantee that
the studio knows it has a stinker on its hands, and wants to keep any negative
reviews to a minimum.

Ironically, though the reviews for "Hercules," so far, have
been mainly positive, while the reviews for "Lucy," which was screened several
days ahead of its release, have been decidedly mixed.

2 – Boredom:  Could it
be also that people saw the ads for the film, and felt that it looked like just
another routine, over CGI’d, empty spectacle that they would forget the moment they
left the theater? By late July, most people have had their fill of those kind of
films, since early spring.

"Lucy," on the other hand, judging from the trailer and its
premise, at least looked like something different.

3 – Women: They flocked to the theaters in droves to see a strong female character on the screen in an action film, who is not defined by a man, trying to get married or being stuck in the background as some lump’s understanding wife, or husband, and that significantly boosted the b.o. for the film.

So what does the b.o. disappointment for "Hercules" mean
for Johnson’s career? Not much. He’s had flops before; and also, name me another A-list actor or actress who doesn’t have their fair share of them. And, no doubt, the overseas box office will help soften the blow that Paramount will take on
the film domestically.

Meanwhile, "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes," at the pace it’s
going, will easily surpass $200 million domestically (the film has already made
$181 million overseas to date); and "The Purge: Anarchy" continues as well, on its
way to being one of the most financially successful films of the year, when you compare
its production cost to its box office take.

1) Lucy     Uni.     $44,025,000     
2) Hercules Par.     $29,000,000     
3) Dawn of the Planet of the Apes     Fox     $16,400,000     Total: $172,089,000     
4) The Purge: Anarchy     Uni.     $9,896,000     Total: $51,272,000     
5) Planes: Fire & Rescue     BV     $9,303,000     Total: $35,121,000     
6) Sex Tape     Sony     $5,975,000         Total: $26,877,000     
Transformers: Age of Extinction     Par.     $4,600,000 Total: $236,352,000     
8) And So It Goes     CE     $4,552,000     
9) Tammy     WB     $3,400,000     Total: $78,147,000     
10) A Most Wanted Man     RAtt.     $2,717,000   
11) 22 Jump Street     Sony     $2,500,000     Total: $185,654,000     
12) How to Train Your Dragon 2     Fox     $2,200,000     Total:     $165,629,000    

This Article is related to: Box Office



Reviews for "Lucy" gained momentum in the positive direction; for example, on Rotten Tomatoes, "Lucy" rose from what can be considered a mixed score to a mainly positive score (66%) while the score for "Hercules" has steadily fallen on that site (currently at 60%).


I purposely chose Lucy because I wanted it to beat Hercules. I rarely go to the theater (too many rude people and too many bad movies) but I wanted a film with a female in an action role to do well because if it didn't, we wouldn't see another role like that for 5 years. Lucy was disappointing despite having a compelling premise (it needed more creative thinking instead of being rushed) but I didn't hate it. Too many movies ignore the full humanity of women (thank goodness for t.v.) so it was good to see a woman be something that the average American man wouldn't conceive.


I would have chosen "Hercules" over "Lucy." I really had no idea what "Lucy" was about?


I decided to see HERCULES over LUCY after seeing negative review after negative review after negative review about LUCY. And I'm glad that I did. I thought HERCULES was more deserving of positive press before the film's release. Maybe it will do better at the box office this coming weekend, since I thoroughly enjoyed the film and told quite a few people to enjoy it.

Monique A Williams

I dragged my Mr. to see Lucy and I really liked it. He thought we should have seen Hercules instead. Ooops.


Just wait until The Rock plays Shazam, like he loves to hint at. Then people will be waiting to see him like they go for Scar Jo.

I agree that maybe a film like Lucy brings in the female moviegoer, but dudes have to do more convincing to drag ladies into the Hercules meathead fest. He might be buff as hell, but maybe they're not interested in seeing Rock stomp around for 2 hours.

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