‘Robin Hood’: The Biggest Blockbuster Bomb of 2018

Lionsgate’s take on Sherwood Forest suffers worst opening of any film this year with a budget above $90 million

Robin Hood 2018
Larry Horricks/Lionsgate

Lionsgate’s “Robin Hood” is turning out to be this year’s biggest blockbuster bomb, with a $14 million five-day opening against a budget of just under $100 million.

This year’s Thanksgiving weekend has provided the most lucrative box office ever. But even with all the record-breaking success, there have been some failures in 2018. Most of those bombs, like Paramount’s “Annihilation” and Fox’s “The Darkest Minds,” have had low-to-mid-level budgets that have reduced how much of a financial hit their studios have taken.

With a global launch of just $22.8 million, “Robin Hood” has had the worst start for any film this year with a budget of $90 million or higher. It’s another flop on top of several for Lionsgate, including the sci-fi film “Kin” ($9.9 million grossed against a $30 million budget), and the Kate McKinnon/Mila Kunis spy comedy “The Spy Who Dumped Me” ($75 million/$40 million budget). So far this year, the studio has only grossed $358 million domestically, down 54 percent from this point last year.

Until now, there hasn’t been a bomb as big as ones seen in 2017, like “King Arthur: Legend of the Sword,” which failed to make back its $175 million budget.

This year’s flops were at least able to post global grosses that exceeded their budgets. Fox’s “The Predator,” made for a pricey $88 million, made $160 million worldwide. Disney’s “Solo,” while being the first “Star Wars” film to gross less than $400 million and raise questions about the future of the classic franchise, was at least able to make back all its production and marketing costs through ancillary revenue.

Even the most recent flop, the $120 million “Nutcracker and the Four Realms,” didn’t do as poorly as “Robin Hood” with a $20 million domestic opening. But this critically panned take on the hero of Sherwood Forest needed the extended holiday weekend just to post a start above $10 million, having just made an estimated $9.1 million from Friday through Sunday. Overseas, it has done even worse with $8.7 million from 33 countries. The U.K., home of Robin Hood, was the top country with a mere $1.7 million grossed.

Lionsgate will try to right the course next year with a 2019 lineup headlined by the final installment in Tyler Perry’s “Madea” series, “A Madea Family Funeral,” a reboot of “Hellboy” starring David Harbour, and the third chapter of Keanu Reeves’ “John Wick” saga.