11:15 am EST, August 7, 2013

Disney confirms $190 million loss due to ‘The Lone Ranger’s’ box office woes

In a recent conference call, Disney execs confirmed that the studio will show losses of up to $190 million due to Johnny Depp’s, The Lone Ranger, and its disappointing box office run.

the lone ranger flop bob igerWe’ve known this day was coming since The Lone Ranger’s opening weekend, but it’s now been confirmed that Disney will see a loss of $160-190 million due to The Lone Ranger’s disappointing performance at the box office.

According to Variety, the losses will be in Disney’s fiscal fourth quarter, which finishes this September. The Lone Ranger has pulled in $175.5 at the worldwide box office, and it reportedly cost $215-250 million.

Disney’s CEO Bob Iger said that “The last number of summers have been quite competitive and crowded.”

He continued saying, “I don’t think [this summer] has been more crowded or competitive although a lot of attention has been paid to it.”

He went on to point towards Iron Man 3 as being a massive success during this summer, saying, “We think The Avengers helped Iron Man 3.” Iron Man 3 was indeed financially successful, pulling in $1.2 billion, and certainly benefited from The Avengers’ worldwide popularity.

Iger explained, “There has been a lot of discussion of the risk of high-cost tentpole films; we certainly can attest to that given The Lone Ranger.” Disney’s CEO says that they still believe in the “tentpole strategy” and that they believe it to be a “good strategy,” but that it needs to be supported by a talented cast and massive marketing.

Iger said that he’s positive about their future as they still hold Pixar, Marvel, and most recently Lucasfilm, which “will help us rise above that din and compete effectively. But you still have to make really strong films. I don’t think the dynamic [of crowded summers] has changed…”

Iger also felt that their animated films had been strong and expected future animation based films would continue to be a main source of Disney’s success. He said Disney expects to make $400 million more outside of the states from their recent animated film Monsters University.

disney wide

We agree that crowded summers aren’t anything new, but it doesn’t seem like they’re learning any lessons by watching a $215 million dollar film bomb at the box office. It’s a little disconcerting that they don’t seem very concerned, but massive flops aren’t entirely new either.

Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer recently came to their film’s rescue when they expressed almost hatred towards American film critics, saying that the American critics didn’t give The Lone Ranger a fair shake. They both felt that specifically American critics had judged the film during its bumpy production, and not based off the final product.

Readers can watch The Lone Ranger’s main characters discuss their feelings on critics and how they believe it affected the film’s box office. It’s definitely something we’ve never seen before, actors feeling the need to defend their film from American critics.

If a movie is enjoyable, the masses will go see it despite the critics. That’s been proven time and time again, and it’s definitely interesting to hear what Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer have to say in defense of their film. Armie Hammer even goes on to say, “they [American critics] decided to slit the jugular of our movie.”

On one side it’s nice to see actors defending a film they seem to genuinely believe was well done. On the other hand, the public clearly spoke and this was not a case where critics killed a film’s success. The average moviegoer rarely reads reviews prior to seeing films and so the interview with Depp and Hammer seems more like a saving face act.

The media has spent enough time on The Lone Ranger and its box office woes, so we’ll leave it alone and say that Disney will still have a nice fiscal year due to Iron Man 3 and Monsters University, and we look forward to seeing what they have in store for fans in the future.

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