Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance Has a Disappointing Debut at #3

By Todd Allen

ghost rider Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance Has a Disappointing Debut at #3If you didn’t hear about it, the Ghost Rider sequel film, “Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance” debuted this weekend.  It also didn’t finish where the experts thought it would.  Initial estimates have it in the #3 slot behind Safe House and The Vow.

The list from Box Office Mojo:

Safe House $24,000,000
The Vow
$23,600,000
Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance
$22,000,000
Journey 2: The Mysterious Island
$20,085,000
This Means War
$17,550,000

These are estimates and everything’s close enough, things could switch around a little when the real numbers come out Monday, but it’s much more likely if there’s any change in order, it would be Safe House and The Vow swapping places.  This is going to be disappointing for Sony/Marvel, since the studios love to say they were the #1 film opening week when getting ready for overseas releases.  This disappointment will be compounded when you figure there were supposed to be some more expensive 3D tickets in that total.  And you have CNN/EW with a $29.5M forecast that didn’t happen.  (They were pretty close for This Means War, forecasting $17M vs. the $17.55M estimate.)

The trade press is putting the Ghost Rider budget at around $75M.  With a $22M debut, it’s going to take a strong overseas showing to recoup costs before the DVD and broadcast rights kick in.  According to Box Office Mojo, the first Ghost Rider did 50.6% domestic vs. 49.4% foreign, so this one will probably take a little while turn a profit.  That said, if you look at the long tail, it’s an unusual movie that doesn’t turn a profit if you give it a few years.

Comments

  1. ComicBeatFollower says:

    I was totally disappointed with the movie.
    The first one was actually better.
    I’m so glad I didn’t see the 3D version.

    If not for the friends who wanted to go see it, I would have been playing Reckoning:KoA and checking my newsfeeds.

    I hope Avengers and A S-M aren’t as bad.

  2. Considering a lot of people boycotted the movie when marvel sued the creator of Ghost Rider, an 80-something year old man living off social security… No surprise the movie will be considered a bomb. Where is the sense in that? Marvel, bigtime company taking $17,000 from an old man? Talk about being a bully.

  3. Charles Knight says:

    “Considering a lot of people boycotted the movie when marvel sued the creator of Ghost Rider.”

    Fantasy – I’m not saying that some people didn’t do this but in numbers that make a real difference? no.

  4. Charles says:

    Marvel didnt produce Ghost Rider, Sony did.

    This fiasco falls sqaurely on Sony.

    If anyone boycotted to get back at Marvel, theyve made a deadly miscalculation.

    Besides, who thought this movie would be a hit. Clearly Marvel themselves didn’t because I can remember the Ghost Rider blitz from Marvel the first time out. It’s seems Marvel were all “meh” about this one.

  5. I think the majority of the general public isn’t even aware who Gary Friedrich is.

    More likely that after the first Ghost Rider got a bad response that few are interested in a sequel. Perhaps it would have done better with another lead actor and a complete reboot.

    I imagine that this is it for Ghost Rider movies. Columbia Pictures / Sony will step away from this property and it will revert back to Marvel Studios. Perhaps they might use him in a cameo in one of their Marvel Studio movies as they expand the Marvel Studios universe.

  6. Good. I actually wish it was lower.

  7. Jason says:

    Box Office Mojo updated that the budget was actually a low $57 million (they got the numbers switched) so the movie will probably be profitable by the end of the week considering foreign grosses and adding video will probabltuned up far more in the black than the first one which cost twice as much. At least enough to let Sony do a reboot in three years or so.

    No way Sony will let this property revert back toMarvel unless Disney ponies up a ton of cash, franchises like this aren’t things you let walk away.

  8. morganagrom says:

    Too bad. It should have been lower.

  9. filippod@popfloor.com says:

    I don’t see how the the movie’s failure could bring any benefit to Gary Friedrich. It looks quite the opposite to me. Lawsuit or not.

  10. jacob lyon goddard says:

    So, does this hurt Sony or does this hurt Marvel/Disney?

  11. Seeing as how it got CRUSHINGLY bad reviews across the board, I’m surprised it made the top 5. I read one review and I nearly fell into a coma! This thing sounds bad, and bad in a way that people cannot excuse, like they did for the first movie.

  12. skyhawk says:

    Punisher, Blade, Ghost Rider, Hellstrom are unique properties in Marvel that would require “R” ratings. I would’ve loved to see how Guillermo del Toro would handle Ghost Rider.

  13. Chris Hero says:

    There’s no chance in Hell Sony will let a property revert back to Disney.

  14. Nicolas Cage’s “Drive Angry” remains the best Ghost Rider movie starring Nicolas Cage…

  15. >This fiasco falls sqaurely on Sony.

    If anyone boycotted to get back at Marvel, theyve made a deadly miscalculation.<

    Please! No one is dying from this!

    Sony does business with Marvel. If a property of theirs they license from Marvel isn't profitable, after a while, it could affect Marvel. Yes, it's not a quick solution, but it seems to be one of the few available to try.

  16. Al™ says:

    I recorded the first GR movie when it was broadcast and ended up fast forwarding through it. b-a-d.
    I am not in a hurry to watch the second one.

  17. I actually really liked the first one … so I’m one of the “repeat customers” I’m sure they would have like to have had for this film.

    Oh well.

  18. “I think the majority of the general public isn’t even aware who Gary Friedrich is.”

    That’s a sure bet. Hell, I bet a majority of comic book readers don’t know who he is at this point. He’s from another generation and hasn’t ascended to comic book icon status.

    I didn’t realize this movie opened this weekend, and have heard no chatter about it locally. The first film was a dog (and that’s being unkind to dogs), so I’ll see this at the second-run theater or on DVD.

  19. Jason is right on this one. The movie will make the money back and more in the aftermarket — just like the first movie did.

    Hollywood invests in this type of film for the money not the art of filmmaking. That’s why this sequel was green-lit. It’s like Yogi’s quip that nobody goes to a particular restaurant anymore because it’s so crowded. Ghost Rider made money. Period (over $200 million). This sequel with an even lower budget (almost half of the first) has already recoup nearly half of that on the opening weekend. Result: it will also make money. And that is what Hollywood really cares about.

    It’s math.

  20. Heidi, this just dawned on me…WHY NO COVERAGE OF CHRONICLE?!?! that film(saw it twice) is worthy of our time than this crap. so yeah peoples go and see Chronicle instead, it as close as your getting to an akira film.

  21. @ Serhend: there is already an Akira film. It’s called Akira and I’m sure it’s much more interesting than Chronicle.

    As for GR2 22 million is a pretty solid number for a 57 mil budget nowadays. They’ll probably do 60 million at the domestic box office, and start making some money on TV rights and DVD (what most movies do). We’re far from bombs like Drive Angry or Dylan Dog.

  22. Saber Tooth Tiger Mike says:

    Nicolas Cage must have some incriminating photos of some very important executives to keep being cast in roles he’s not fit for. Either that or his Q-rating must be through the roof.

  23. @JM, Akira is a convoluted terd people only watched primarily for the violence. Chronicle is a smartly written and shot film that takes the same story and cuts the fat away and tells a lean and thoughtful story. to be more specific i meant the live action Akira film, but the animation is rather dull too. So I repeat Watch Chronicle instead of Ghost Rider 2: Electric Boogaloo.

  24. MBunge says:

    “The movie will make the money back and more in the aftermarket — just like the first movie did.”

    Yeah, I think people need to stop pretending that they’re experts in cinema economics. The “long tail” doesn’t fix everything.

    Mike

  25. MBunge says:

    Oh, and Ghost Rider 2 stunk on ice.

    Mike

  26. Snikt Snakt says:

    “Considering a lot of people boycotted the movie when marvel sued the creator of Ghost Rider, an 80-something year old man living off social security… No surprise the movie will be considered a bomb. Where is the sense in that? Marvel, bigtime company taking $17,000 from an old man? Talk about being a bully.”

    When will people please stop beating this dead horse?!?

    Sony Ghost Rider movie and Marvel GR comic are two different things…

  27. True, the “long tail” doesn’t fix everything, I agree. But it does fix Ghost Rider — which is what this topic is about. The studios hoped for 30 million instead they got 25. Not a huge failure, but a failure nonetheless. Like I said, it’s basic math. No experts needed.

    The studios may not be laughing all the way to the bank, but they are going there. They’ll ultimately be in the black and they’ll keep the rights. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying the long tail is a good production model or even a reason to make the movie in the first place — but history shows it has saved a film (like this) more times than we can count.

  28. The first one was the 2nd worst comic book movie since X-Men one, after Catwoman. Other than a guy with flame on his skull, I felt no connection to the comics. I had this idea that this one might be better, but… sounds like folks don’t think it was.

    Maybe it was kismet that I missed it this weekend. I pretty much haven’t missed an opening for a big comic book related movie (as long as I know the character well) since X-Men 1. I just totally lost track of this one even tho I had been to the theaters recently and watched a preview. I still thought it was a ways off.

    GHOST RIDER has a weird, special place in my heart. When I was really little, I felt guilty reading old GR comics. They felt satanic. I didn’t like for my parents to see me reading them, yet I was still fascinated by them.

  29. MBunge says:

    “True, the “long tail” doesn’t fix everything, I agree. But it does fix Ghost Rider — which is what this topic is about.”

    Well, it looks like they kept the budget low enough to avoid this sequel becoming a genuine bomb, but let’s take a cursory look at the numbers.

    The publicly available budget is 57 million. There wasn’t that much marketing but it got some, so let’s say it was another 10 million. That’s a 67 million dollar sunk cost. GR:SOV’s estimated opening weekend, which will almost certainly turn out to be slightly less, is just over 22 million.

    Given the response to the film, I’d say there’s a very good chance it will fall short of making up that 67 million at the box office. True, there are home rental fees, DVD sales and foreign box office, but all those things come with additional expenses and more hands reaching in to take a cut of any profits. And frankly, anyone who spends 67 million dollars today isn’t doing so in the hope they might break even a few years down the road.

    Mike

  30. You know it’s funny, the first Ghost Rider had a good starting weekend but fizzled over time and it only broke even in the domestic box office, it was the overseas market (and DVD sales) that kicked it into double that mark $200+ million). This sequel will be hard pressed to find that kind of luck… but as noted it cost significantly less. So it’s like they had a handicap just going in.

    And yeah, nobody should think that breaking even is a good investment. It’s obvious they were hoping for lightning in a cheap bottle and rake in the gravy. But projected sales means they might not be eating this film. As you said, not a total bomb, but at least they have light at the end of their tunnel. What we all hope is that this shows the diminishing returns which should stop any sequel in its tracks.

    If they have to release something just to retain the rights then perhaps they’ll go straight to DVD… which might have been a good idea with this one. Haha!

  31. I didn’t think it was that bad, although I think was the only one in the Westwood Village Regency Theater at today’s 2:30PM showing (at least, as far as I know – I had the balcony completely to myself).

    I liked how they utilized a forgotten Spidey-villain in the bad guy role- Carrion.

    ~

    Coat

  32. R. Maheras says:

    Dating back to the 1960s, I’ve only walked out in the middle of maybe a half-dozen movies in my life, and “Ghost Rider 2″ was one of them.

    It was repetitious, boring and I simply didn’t like any of the characters.

    What a waste of 13 bucks.

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