If there were any hopes that China and Japan might rescue "Ghost in the Shell" from its box-office spiral, they were dashed this weekend as the live-action adaptation earned $41 million overseas in its second weekend of release.
China, where the Scarlett Johannson film opened on Friday, led international markets with $21.4 million. Its overseas total now stands at $92 million.
The story is even more grim in North America, where "Ghost in the Shell" raked in just $7.3 million in its second frame, ending the weekend at No. 5. The controversial live-action adaptation of the popular cyberpunk manga, which faced withering criticism for casting white actors in Japanese roles, has grossed $31.6 million in the United States, far short of its estimated $110 million production budget. Variety notes the film "is shaping up to be one of the year’s biggest bombs. "
“We had hopes for better results domestically,” Kyle Davies, Paramount’s president of domestic distribution, recently acknowledged. "I think the conversation regarding casting impacted the reviews. You’ve got a movie that is very important to the fanboys since it’s based on a Japanese anime movie. So you’re always trying to thread that needle between honoring the source material and make a movie for a mass audience. That’s challenging, but clearly the reviews didn’t help.”
The North American box office was led by DreamWorks Animation's "The Boss Baby," which earned $26.3 million in its second weekend of release -- enough to stave off newcomer "Smurfs: The Lost Village" and the returning "Beauty and the Beast," which finished second with $25 million. The Disney film's domestic total now stands at $432.3 million million.
"Smurfs" finished a disappointing third with $14.1 million, followed by “Going in Style” with $12.5 million.
(via Exhibitor Relations)