U.S. Markets closed

Will Smith's 'Gemini Man' is a $75 million flop

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Gemini Man (Credit: Paramount Pictures)

Will Smith's new sci-fi action thriller Gemini Man could cost its studio a massive $75 million loss, following another terrible weekend at the box office.

The movie opened in China over the weekend, and it was hoped that the world's second biggest movie-going market could pull things back from the brink, but it seems it has flopped there too.

It made $21 million over its opening weekend in China, falling behind Maleficent: Mistress of Evil's $22.4 million.

Added to its worldwide box office so far, and it's only managed $118.7 million.

While that might sound like a decent amount of money, it most certainly is not – the special effects-heavy movie, helmed by Ang Lee, cost in the region of $138 - $158 million.

Read more: Will Smith’s biggest career regret

Add on a significant amount for marketing and advertising, and Paramount Pictures, Skydance, Jerry Bruckheimer Films and Chinese film group Alibaba Pictures is looking down the barrel of a $75 million loss, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The movie, which was in development for 20 years, finds Smith playing an ageing hitman who is pursued by a clone of his younger self.

As well as using extensive de-ageing technology so that Smith can play his older and younger selves, Lee continues to pursue hi-frame rate filming, which has proved hugely divisive among audiences and critics (The Times calls the effect 'aesthetically repellent').

Read more: Fresh Prince spin-off on the way

Technology and visual effects aside, the movie received terrible reviews, Variety calling it 'a high-concept misfire'.

The past decade hasn't been particularly kind to Smith at the box office.

SHANGHAI, CHINA - OCTOBER 14: Actor Will Smith attends 'Gemini Man' press conference on October 14, 2019 in Shanghai, China. (Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)

After Earth with his son Jaden flopped in 2013, Winter's Tale in 2014 tanked dramatically the year after (making $31 million), as did Collateral Beauty and sports drama Concussion.

Coming up, he has the return of the Bad Boys franchise, with Bad Boys For Life due out in January, 2020.