Not Even China Could Save the Warcraft Movie

Illustration for article titled Not Even China Could Save the iWarcraft /iMovie

The Warcraft movie may have tanked in the United States, but it did much better abroad. Although it never even cracked $50 million in the U.S., the film’s massive success in China accounted for more than half of Warcraft’s $430 million total box office—and yet, Warcraft is still poised to lose money.

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Even with a Chinese premiere that was the largest foreign debut in that county’s history and $430 million made, Warcraft is still not going to make a profit. Last month, The Hollywood Reporter estimated that the movie would need $450 million to break even. Its theatrical run has already begun slowing down, leaving it about $20 million short or breaking even right now.

According to The Hollywood Reporter’s sources close to the film, the final deficit will end up being about $15 million. (Others, not including the Chinese digital deal and merchandising, put the loss at between $30 and $40 million.) $15 million is a low loss for a movie that cost $160 million to make, butHollywood math is not like regular math.

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This puts a damper on the idea that success in China paved the way for a Warcraft sequel. Warcraft 2: The Search for More Money isn’t looking nearly as likely as did when the movie started taking China by storm. If there is one, it’s going to have be a whole lot cheaper than the first movie was.

[The Hollywood Reporter]

Katharine is the former managing editor of io9.

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DISCUSSION

Warcraft - which got terrible reviews and had no big name stars - made $430 million. It is a flop, because the marketing and production budgets were so high.

John Carter - decent reviews, but still no big stars - made $285 million. Also a flop due to production and marketing costs.

There is an audience for this material. But the CGI has to be more cost effective and the marketing smarter.