While Universal may be having a banner year with “Jurassic World,” “Furious 7,” “Pitch Perfect 2” and more, a less-than-outrageous film in its lineup, “Jem and the Holograms,” is hardly in theaters anymore after two weeks of release.
Exhibitors have been pushing the feature film live-action reboot of the ’80s cartoon out of theaters, with “Jem and the Holograms” remaining in just approximately 50 locations.
It grossed a mere $2.2 million after being released last month. Luckily for Universal, it shouldn’t lose much money from the film. It had an economical budget of $5 million (without taking into account marketing and promotion costs), but it still ranked at the lowest opening for a movie that bowed in more than 2,000 locations when it debuted to $1.3 million.
While some reports say Universal pulled the picture, the culprits are actually theaters. With “Spectre” and “The Peanuts Movie” debuting last weekend, it makes sense for the exhibitors to push the low-performing “Jem” out of theaters to make more room for screens to show the higher-grossing movies.
It didn’t help the film that it was slammed by critics, with Rotten Tomatoes handing it a 20% “fresh” rating based on reviews. In his review for Variety, Geoff Berkshire called “Jem and the Holograms” “considerably less fun than any paper-thin ‘Star Is Born’ ripoff has any right to be.”
Still, it shouldn’t leave too much of a mark on Universal’s stellar 2015. With help from hits like “Minions” and “Fifty Shades of Grey,” along with its other big titles, it blew past the $2 billion mark globally in record time this past summer.