ByElise Jost, writer at
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Elise Jost

Which controversy has rocked your summer the most: The fans vs critics showdown brought about by the messy birth of the DCEU, or the outcry at the announcement and release of an all-female Ghostbusters reboot? Whatever the topic your social media feeds seemed more focused on, while the former one is bound to last for at least a few more years, the latter's been brought to a grinding halt: It looks like there will be no sequel to the new Ghostbusters.

As the summer box office numbers keep on rolling in, the failure of Ghostbusters to conquer the heart of moviegoers is becoming apparent — or at least, enough moviegoers to make up for its exorbitant budget. While Sony hasn't confirmed any forecasts yet, it seems the possibility of a sequel, which had already been discussed during the movie's time in theaters, is becoming less and less likely.

Ghostbusters Is Facing A $70 Million Loss

'Ghostbusters' / Sony
'Ghostbusters' / Sony

It hasn't even opened in all of its scheduled markets worldwide yet, but Ghostbusters is facing a heavy loss. With an initial budget of $144 million, plus marketing costs, Sony had revealed that they were hoping for at least $300 million to break even. Now, the movie stands at $180 million at the global box office, which is barely above half of what it was supposed to make, and means the studio should brace themselves for a loss of about $70 million. That should also put any plans for a sequel on hold.

We'll obviously have to wait for the final days of the movie in theaters to determine exactly how well it has fared, but even if a representative has claimed that the calculation was "way off," it's far from the clear win Sony was hoping for in order to launch a Ghostbusters universe.

"This loss calculation is way off. With multiple revenue streams, including consumer products, gaming, location-based entertainment, continued international rollout, and huge third-party promotional partnerships that mitigated costs, the bottom line, even before co-financing, is not remotely close to that number."

Not all is lost, since an animated feature as well as a TV series are reportedly being planned, but the main question is why exactly Ghostbusters didn't catch on?

Ghostbusters Faced An Online Rage Like No Other, But Is That The Real Reason For Its Poor Performance?

'Ghostbusters' / Sony
'Ghostbusters' / Sony

The quick conclusion to Ghostbusters's box office run would be for online trolls to shout out a victorious "We told you!" Ever since the movie's announcement, and despite the stellar cast including Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy and Chris Hemsworth, the backlash has been fierce. From the awful sexism to complaints about yet another remake, online communities were bent on sending a message: We don't want another Ghostbusters.

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Was it really the rage, though, that prevented Ghostbusters from scoring a box office home run? According to Forbes, Ghostbusters suffered a 54% drop following the release of Star Trek Beyond... which experienced a 58% drop after Jason Bourne, which dropped 61% after Suicide Squad, and all of that in the space of three weeks. Those kind of numbers point very clearly at a summer tentpole saturation — add to that the exceptional results of this year's animated features, and the amount of choice will lead to confusion rather than success for all.

Of course, that also brings us back to the general anti-remake/reboot/sequel feeling currently opposing Hollywood, which made up most of the backlash against Ghostbusters. Fewer of these would help de-clutter the box office and leave more space for new releases to soar. Let's just please avoid turning the Ghostbusters performance into an argument against female blockbusters.

Do you think Ghostbusters deserved to fail at the box office? If you've seen the movie, what did you think of it?

Check out director Paul Feig discussing working with Wiig and McCarthy:

[Sources: The Hollywood Reporter, Forbes]


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