The Elizabeth Banks directed reboot of Charlie’s Angels flopped this weekend and, for me, it’s more of a question of “who?”, rather than “why?”. For example, who are those two chicks who aren’t Kristen Stewart? And who thought KStew was a big enough draw to compensate for the above. According to The Hollywood Reporter, a shit-ton more people would rather watch Christian Bale scowl in overalls while driving a fast car than watch KStew scowl in overalls while driving a fast car. Charlie’s Angels ate Ford V Ferrari’s dust earning just $8.6 million to FVF’s $31M.
It’s not because Charlie’s Angels wasn’t well reviewed (though I’m sure it didn’t help). It seems the main issue was it failed to get the attention of its target demographic.
Directed by Elizabeth Banks, Charlie’s Angels wasn’t able to win over younger females, its target audience, in a major way. Worse, the ‘definite’ recommend on PostTrak was a dismal 47 percent. The pic, starring Kirsten Stewart, Naomi Scott and Ella Balinska as globe-trotting spies, opened 16 years after the big-screen sequel Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle debuted to $37 million, not adjusted for inflation.
Overseas, the film limped to $19.3 million from its first 26 markets, including a third-place finish in China with $7.7 million, for global start of $27.9 million.
Variety adds that next weekend isn’t looking very good for the Angels either since Frozen 2 is opening and “will capture most of that audience next weekend”, that audience perhaps including young women looking for a lesbian light experience.
Some will claim that Banks’ version was never intended to emulate the meat and potatoes version of McG’s films; that this version was expected to be more comedic, and more feminist. Unfortunately, after McG set the table here with the franchise as an action film, you can’t reverse it. You can only outdo him. And with a franchise movie like Charlie’s Angels, you can’t make it for a one quadrant audience.
At least it seems like that one quadrant that did see it (the Lana Del Ray hive came through I guess), really liked it. It has an 81% positive audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. THR adds that Sony’s “financial exposure is minimized” because it had Perfect World China and other investors bankroll half of the movie’s budget, so they’re not too pressed about losing all that money. So I fully expect a Charlie’s Angels sequel well before it’s wanted. And maybe by that time, we’ll actually know who Naomi Scott (the short one) and Ella Balinska (the tall one) are.