“Solo” Flops at the Box Office: What’s Next?
It’s official—Solo: A Star Wars Story is shaping up to be a flop at the box office. After a lukewarm first weekend, Solo’s performance has plummeted over the last weekend. The movie dropped a stunning 77.2 percent from its opening weekend in the U.S. and there are stiff competitors for tickets over the coming weeks. But the real question is what does this mean for Star Wars?
The numbers don’t look good for Solo, and, we’ll be frank, we’re a little surprised. This should have been a slam-dunk for Disney. Instead, Solo’s worldwide box office hit $264 million on Monday—while the film cost $250 million to produce and $150 in marketing. Analysts are now wondering whether or not Solo will even break even. Disney didn’t help their position when they projected an opening haul of $130-$150 million and released the film just five months after The Last Jedi. Executives might have thought they had little choice after Lucasfilm fired the film’s first directors, Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, and brought on Ron Howard to oversee expensive reshoots. Unfortunately, Solo couldn’t live up to those expectations.
So what does this mean for Star Wars? Disney has teased an extensive slate of similar anthology films starring characters from the original trilogy: Boba Fett, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Yoda. Perhaps audiences aren’t ready for movies starring characters that are over 40 years old. A generation of children grew up on the prequels and cartoons starring new characters. It might be time for Star Wars to move on too and embrace new stories.