Monday Morning Quarterback Part I

By BOP Staff

July 7, 2015

Callista Flockhart

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Kim Hollis: Terminator: Genisys earned $27 million from Friday-to-Sunday and has earned $42.4 million since debuting on Wednesday. What do you think about this performance?

Felix Quinonez: I think it's the nail in the coffin for this franchise reboot. Their plans for two sequels always seemed like extreme wishful thinking but after this performance I really see no chance of that happening. I would actually pay to hear someone try to justify going forward with their sequel plans after this.

Edwin Davies: This is pretty terrible, especially considering that it shot under the performances of both the previous installments in the series, neither of which ended up doing particularly well. If they wanted to relaunch the franchise, they needed to make a big impression on opening weekend, and that didn't happen. The negative reviews and mediocre word-of-mouth will also kick the legs out from under it, so the chances of it matching its production budget of $155 million domestically seems pretty much impossible at this point. International numbers could make up the difference, but it would need to earn $400 million overseas to even have a chance of seeing a profit, which seems like a big ask.


Ben Gruchow: I kind of feel bad talking about this, like I'm kicking something while it's down. On the strength of the early foreign gross alone, this won't be an outright disaster on the level of Tomorrowland, or The Lone Ranger, or John Carter. It's also going to make Terminator Salvation look like a hit by comparison, and I'm with Felix: I think this is the end of the road for the franchise (until the inevitable reboot in 2035, with Judgment Day now delayed until 2039 and Skynet being the dark side of wearable tech*). My biggest question is actually whether or not Paramount even expected a better result. I don't know if there was ever a point where this Terminator project was met with anything other than derision or indifference from the public...but if there was, it dissipated by the time the Genisys name was announced, and any remaining enthusiasm was dashed with the first trailer. So I guess the flipside of feeling bad about this is to realize that Paramount should have realized they had it coming.

This is the fifth entry in a franchise with two success stories followed by two consecutive misfires. The Terminator franchise bears a pretty close resemblance to the Batman series in this regard (with the added note that Terminator Salvation in no way approached the depths of Batman & Robin). When Warner Bros. decided to reboot their series with $150 million, they got a well-respected director with a notable visual sense and distinctive storytelling method, a screenwriter who'd earned some pretty decent genre credentials up to that point, and an insanely distinguished cast. Paramount got the guy behind a Thor sequel, the writer behind Drive Angry and Dracula 2000, and an absolutely middle-of-the-road cast. Better things than "Genisys" have been made with less to work with, but not very often and not with these stakes. It'll be a long time before the Terminator name is commercially viable again, if ever, and that's not something to be very happy about. At least Paramount still has Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation to hope for.

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