‘Bros’ Actor Blames ‘Homophobic Weirdos’ For LGBT Rom-Com’s Flop
The opening weekend for the LGBT romantic comedy "Bros" ended with just $4.8 million in ticket sales, despite opening in 3,350 locations and stellar reviews from critics and audiences alike.
The movie, which is the first major studio release of an LGBT rom-com, boasts scores of over 90 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and an "A" on CinemaScore. And while Universal spent $40-50 million promoting the $22 million film, it does not appear to be drawing crowds.
Billy Eichner, who co-wrote, starred in, and produced the movie, took to Twitter on Sunday to express his disappointment in the initial opening weekend number.
"That’s just the world we live in, unfortunately," he wrote. "Even with glowing reviews, great Rotten Tomatoes scores, an A CinemaScore etc, straight people, especially in certain parts of the country, just didn’t show up for Bros. And that’s disappointing but it is what it is."
But there are signs that a romantic comedy was never going to fare well in the current marketplace.
[David A.] Gross, the film consultant, noted that romantic comedies of all kinds have struggled at the box office in recent years. The genre now mostly lives on streaming services. Studios have released 40 rom-coms in theaters over the last decade (four per year), compared to 212 during the 15 years before that (14 per year).
The movie's advertising budget wasn't the only thing attempting to help the movie along. Several stars took to social media to promote the film ahead of its release.
And while LGBT movies are few and far between, others have seen commercial or cult success over the years. Brokeback Mountain, starring Jake Gyllenhall and Heath Ledger, opened with just $547,425 on its first weekend (unlike Bros, it had a limited release) but ultimately earned nearly $200 million worldwide.
While Bros struggled at the box office this weekend, Paramount's Smile topped the box office with $22 million in ticket sales. Don't Worry Darling came in second with $7.3 million. The Woman King came in third with $7 million.