Kick-Ass Debuts to Weak Ticket Sales
April 19, 2010

Now I’m indulging in schadenfreude: The Kick-Ass movie opened this weekend, and it lost out in ticket sales to a cartoon that had already been running for a month.

How to Train Your Dragon took in $20 million; Kick-Ass was second with $19.75. Now, these are estimates, and they’re pretty close, so they might change a bit once final figures are in, but even if Kick-Ass squeaks to first, $20 million isn’t great for a superhero movie with that much promotion. Expectations were higher for the colorful batch of violence and swears, and whether a film is seen as successful or not is often based on how it does against projections, not actual sales.

The movie wasn’t as well-received as hoped, and its R rating prevents the core teen boys (who are the ones who would receive the “it’s so edgy” approach best) from seeing it easily. One fan site blames the marketing, which they think should have made clearer it was a “violent vulgar r-rated geek-fantasy wish-fulfillment story”. Everyone I know had already figured that out, and that’s why they don’t want to see it. The movie is playing best in big cities, and marketers hope that it still has legs, based on its European performance.

11 Responses  
Suzene writes:  

I’d have to put forth effort to care less about “Kick-Ass”, but I’m glad to hear that “How to Train Your Dragon” is still going relatively well. ;)

William George writes:  

I thought Kick-Ass looked like some left-over from the 90s and I was surprised when they made a movie out of it.

Oh well, good for Mark Millar.

Prankster writes:  

It’s really quite a good movie, and I say that as someone who can’t stand Mark Millar. “Geek wish fulfillment” is an odd way to describe it, since the story’s primarily about how unequipped most people, especially geeky comic book nerds, would be to be an actual superhero, no matter how much they might wish otherwise. This was especially true, from what I’ve heard, of the comic, which seems to be outright contemptuous of the superhero fanboy demographic, and piles on the humiliation and hurting on its geek protagonist. The movie’s more humane and actually cares about its characters. And Hit Girl is awesome.

Adam writes:  

Kick-Ass actually did win the weekend at the final tally:

1 – Kick-Ass ($19.8 million)
2 – How to Train Your Dragon ($19.6 million)
3 – Date Night ($16.7 million)
4 – Death at a Funeral ($16.2 million)
5 – Clash of the Titans ($15.5 million)

Link: http://www.getthebigpicture.net/blog/2010/4/19/box-office-kick-ass-barely-wins-final-tally.html

Johanna writes:  

How unsurprising. Yet it appears that they made #1 because HtTYD was originally over-estimated, not because they sold that many more tickets. Thanks for providing the final numbers.

Thom writes:  

I will be curious to see how it works out… most of the positive response I have read and been given by folks who are not fans of Millar. Also, lots of women I know really liked it. It could end up having legs by work of mouth.

Paul O'Brien writes:  

It’s a surprisingly good film, largely because it’s actually much LESS cynical and mean-spirited than the original comic. The reviews in Britain were overwhelmingly positive (except for the Daily Mail, but they specialise in moral outrage so a bad review from them is generally considered a boon).

P.J writes:  

After comparing the comic(from the public library) and movie. I have to say the movie was quite good, but I have nothing positive to say about the comic. One of the more depressing and unpleasant works I have ever seen.

daniel melendez writes:  

it should be 9.99

Comic Business LinkBlogging » Comics Worth Reading writes:  

[…] sums up industry reaction in the light of Kick-Ass’s disappointing opening. It’s being considered another example of how internet buzz doesn’t translate into real […]

True writes:  

Surprisingly good film. Would have brought in far more money if people weren’t mislead by the “Superhero spoof” preview. Actual film was the best super hero movie I’ve ever seen.


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