Zac Effron’s new flick We Are Your Friends was a pretty epic flop. In fact, it was the fourth worst opening weekend of all time, according to Box Office Mojo. That kind of epic flop.
So what in the world happened to result in a meager $1.8 million opening weekend? We Are Your Friends was never predicted to be a huge money-making blockbuster by any means. Even so, the Huffington Post reported that Warner Bros. expected We Are Your Friends to bring in much closer to $8 million over its opening weekend. That’s a pretty big discrepancy. To figure out what went so horribly wrong, we need to check out the premise of the movie itself.
It seems like the biggest complaint movie goers had about We Are Your Friends was its overall generic-ness. It’s a flick about EDM (aka electronic dance music), a young DJ, and his struggle to make his fame and fortune doing what he loves. Combine that with your standard, cookie-cutter female lead, the same plot as every other coming-of-age flick of the last two decades or so, subtract the heart of other dance flicks like Footloose or even Step Up, and it’s not hard to figure out where things fell apart.
Warner Bros., while clearly not stoked about their movie’s epic failure, seem to be taking the disappointing opening weekend in stride and standing behind their star.
“This was a passion project for Zac Efron, and we believe in him. Yes, the result was disappointing, but this was a small film.”
Maybe, just maybe, the studio behind We Are Your Friends should have taken some cues from the social media response to the release of the movie’s trailer when they were calculating their opening weekend expectations.
To be fair, the movie isn’t that poorly reviewed. Over at entertainment juggernaut IMDb, We Are Your Friends currently has a fairly respectable 5.7/10 star rating. While that could and likely will change in the days to come, most people (movie goers and professional critics alike) aren’t saying that this movie was terrible. They’re just saying they don’t care.
So, what’s a star and studio to do?
Right now, it seems like the best thing the folks responsible for We Are Your Friends can do is just ride the wave of shame that comes from knowing your artistic endeavor did just slightly better than such films as Oogieloves and the BIG Balloon Adventure, Delgo, and Saw 10th Anniversary. Not to mention substantially worse than such classics as From Justin to Kelly.
Because who even remembers those flicks anyway? Like three people.
Sometimes fading into utter obscurity is better than being blasted for days all over the ‘net. Which is kind of the rut that We Are Your Friends is in now.
The rumor about any publicity being good publicity? Not entirely true.
If you’re still giving We Are Your Friends the benefit of the doubt, keep in mind it was up against some pretty stiff competition. The weekend’s top five flicks were definitely hard to beat.
It’s also possible that the timing of We Are Your Friends hitting the theater could have played a role in its dismal earnings. The flick’s target demographic just went back to school, for the most part. Labor Day weekend’s just a week away. Maybe when the kid’s get a long weekend, the We Are Your Friends tide will turn.
[Image Courtesy: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images]