When you think “box office bomb,” you think of what? Waterworld, The Lone Ranger, The Postman, maybe? And pretty much every movie Eddie Murphy has made in the last 20 years — right?
Well, The Lone Ranger may have cost about $250 million to make, but it grossed $260.5 million. Waterworld? On a budget of $175 million, it still made $264 million worldwide. And Eddie Murphy — I'm pretty sure he still makes a decent sized chunk of change, and drives a sweet ride.
What about those other movies, though? They were made on very, VERY tight budgets, with sometimes no-name actors and actresses (but once in a while, they had big names attached), and only brought in a couple hundred dollars in profits. Or even less!
I'm a huge fan of following your dreams, but spending your hard-earned money on a movie, and not getting enough back to buy a Ford Pinto?
Let's look at a few of the lowest grossing movies to ever be shown in American theaters!
1. 'Playback' (2012)
Even Christian Slater couldn't save this bomb. A rip-off of The Ring, it played in only one theater (this will be a theme throughout this list), and made $264. That's $252 on its opening weekend. You do the math on how long it was allowed to remain in the theaters.
2. 'Intervention' (2007)
Like Playback, Intervention played in one theater for three days to make $279. It starred Jennifer Tilly, Andie MacDowell, Colm Feore, Rupert Graves and Donna D'Errico, and it was about — never mind. At the 2007 San Diego Film Festival, it even won the director a Best Feature Film Award, and a Best Actress award for Jennifer Tilly.
3. 'Zyzzyx Road' (2006)
Katherine Heigl? Tom Sizemore? Nobody cared, because it grossed a whopping $30. Again, it only played in one theater in Dallas for one week. Six people watched this thing. Even though it's the lowest grossing film of all time, that claim to fame will eventually most likely put it right up there with Sharknado, the king of crappy money making movies, and it just might top the $100 mark!
4. 'Trojan War' (1997)
Will Friedle (Boy Meets World) and Jennifer Love Hewitt couldn't even save this sucker. Will's character gets his butt kicked during his quest to find a condom so he could sleep with his dream girl, played by Marley Shelton. It cost a whopping $15 million to make, and lasted less than a week in one theater and made $309.
5. 'Storage 24' (2013)
Let's go back down to the sub-$100 range again. Again, with the one theater for one week theme, the film operated on basically no budget, which, for a sci-fi alien flick, is something you kind of need to make it not look like a hokey mess. And it only made $72.
6. 'Dog Eat Dog' (2009)
You'd think that with winning the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, and a buttload of other awards from around the world, it would have done better. Nope! One theater showed it, and it made a world-shattering $80.
7. 'The Objective' (2009)
2009 was a good year (or was it bad year?) for movies to make under $100 at the box office. This one pulled in $95 (so, SO close to triple digits!), and was directed by The Blair Witch Project's co-director, Daniel Myrick. Again, it spent one week in one New York theater, according to Box Office Mojo. But IMDb's stats show it earning $2 million a month later when it was released in L.A. After making only $95 in its first run, I'm thinking IMDb might be a little off.
8. 'The Marsh' (2007)
This one starred Forest Whitaker and made it to one theater for three days, pulling in only $336 of its $7 million budget. Of course, its foreign sales did much better, raking in over $2 million more. But still, fresh from his Oscar win for The Last King of Scotland, Forest Whitaker pulled in less than $400? Pretty embarrassing.
9. 'Apartment 143' (2012)
Just think if this movie had made $143, how funny would that be? Alas, it raked it in, earning $383. One theater and one week later it rounds off our list of some of the biggest box office flops of all time!