Why’d it bomb? Ice Age: Collision Course
For the first in a possible new series, I’m going to look at movies and make theories about why they might have bombed at the box office. I’m going to be mostly focusing on why the movie bombed in the US because, seeing as I don’t live in Europe, I’m not sure what could’ve affected it’s European gross. For the first one, I’m going to look at a movie that really has only bombed in the states but has done well in other countries…yet, considering the European box office grosses of its predecessors, also comes off as a bit of a disappointment.
Ice Age has been going on so long that, if it weren’t for these movies, many of the franchise’s actors could probably be good candidates for future WTHH articles, like Denis Leary, John Leguizamo, Seann William Scott, Josh Peck (maybe), Queen Latifah, and Jennifer Lopez, as these movies were more or less keeping their careers alive (although Denis always has his FX shows and John can always pop up in a supporting role here and there). However, it was really a big money maker for Blue Sky Studios, as these movies helped fund their other movies, most of which were box office hits but not quite as big as the Ice Age movies were.
Yet, now that the latest movie has bombed in the US and under performed everywhere else, one can’t help but wonder if they’ll still try to make more of these movies. But, why did it bomb in the first place? Well, I’ve got a few ideas:
The previous Ice Age movies didn’t really have that many family friendly movies opening up around the same time. When Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs opened, Up had already been in theaters for two months and, while Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen came out around the same time, it was PG-13 and had a lot of violence, so it could be seen as a nice alternative for parents who didn’t want to expose their kids to more violent, “edgy” movies. The same thing is true for Ice Age: Continental Drift, as it came out around the time The Dark Knight Rises did but, again, it could be seen as an alternative for parents who didn’t want their kids watching PG-13 movies.
However, when Ice Age: Collision Course came out, Finding Dory had not only been in theaters for a while but The Secret Life of Pets came out two weeks earlier. As a result, kids and their families had two other options that were both more critically acclaimed and already making lots of money. It probably didn’t help that Ice Age 5 got panned, which probably drove a lot of already wary parents away and made them want to see Pets or Dory instead, seeing as critics liked those movies.
3. Little to no advertising
I don’t know what it’s like in other countries but, in the US, there has been little to no advertising for Collision Course. All I really saw was a poster in my theater and an ad on a bus.
Compare that to the 4th one, which had a McDonalds commercial, a bunch of TV ads for it, a short starring Maggie Simpson that played before it for some reason, and two music videos made for the movie-one of the film’s cast singing a cheesy song and the other one a boy band video.
It’s like, because the 4th one made less money in the US than it did in other countries, Fox decided it wasn’t worth it to spend a lot on promoting it.
2. Lack of Adult Appeal
Now I’m only speaking for the theater I work at but, when we do show kids movies, it seems that the more successful kids movies are the ones where not only kids and their families show up but lots of adults, without kids, show up as well. There were showings of Finding Dory and Secret Life of Pets that, I kid you not, were made entirely (or almost entirely) up of adults.
However, not only were there barely any people at Ice Age at all (it was only about 5-10 people per screening) but, when someone did come to see the movie, it was mostly kids and their families and sometimes there was a childless adult or two, rather than the mix of families and childless adults that were at the movie. And I think that has to do with…
1. Franchise Fatigue
A lot of people are just sick of the Ice Age franchise. The franchise has never exactly been considered top-notch family entertainment, in fact the first one, despite having a 77% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, got a more mixed response when it first came out, but the reviews have pretty much gotten worse and worse with each installment. Audiences are starting to feel the same way. If you looked at the RT scores, the audience scores have also gone down. Not only that but the 3rd one had the lowest opening weekend for the franchise, until the 5th one came along, and the 4th movie, despite having an opening weekend on par with the original, ended up grossing the least amount of money in the franchise as a whole in the states, until the 5th one came along.
Now it seems like other countries are starting to get sick of it as well. While the first 4 movies were only modest hits in the states, they were huge hits in other countries, with the 4th being the highest grossing movie in the franchise.
Yet, altogether, when you count both the US and foreign gross, the movie has made just a little over $300 million dollars, which is A LOT less than the $880 million dollars the 4th one made.
Perhaps, the majority of people in foreign countries were disappointed in the 4th one and that’s why it’s making WAY less money than usual.
So that’s my theories on why Ice Age Collision Course has been somewhat of a box office disappointment. Agree? Disagree? Have your own opinions? Please let me know below!