‘Jack the Giant Slayer’ snuffed out at box office

March 04, 2013 | 8:59 a.m.
jack the giant slayer nicholas hoult and bryan singer on set Jack the Giant Slayer snuffed out at box office

"Jack the Giant Slayer" star Nicholas Hoult and director Bryan Singer consult on the set of the film. (Daniel Smith / Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

jack the giant slayer on set with stanley tucci Jack the Giant Slayer snuffed out at box office

Bryan Singer and cast members, including Stanley Tucci, far left, and Ewan McGregor, third from left, on the set of the film. (Daniel Smith / Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

jack the giant slayer stanley tucci and ewen bremner Jack the Giant Slayer snuffed out at box office

Stanley Tucci, left, and Ewen Bremner in "Jack the Giant Slayer." (Daniel Smith / Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

jack the giant slayer ewan macgregor eleanor tomlinson and nicholas hoult Jack the Giant Slayer snuffed out at box office

Ewan McGregor, from left, Eleanor Tomlinson and Nicholas Hoult star in "Jack The Giant Slayer." (Daniel Smith/Warner Bros. Pictures/MCT)

“Jack the Giant Slayer” landed with a thud at the box office this weekend, the first official bomb of 2013.

The film was No. 1 at the box office this weekend, but barely raked in a disappointing $28 million. The film, which cost nearly $200 million to make, is directed by Bryan Singer (“X-Men”) and stars Nicholas Hoult (“Warm Bodies”). It was released by New Line (“Lord of the Rings.”).

The CGI-heavy film is a riff on the childhood favorite, “Jack and the Beanstalk,” which ends with the ogre toppling to his death after he’s outwitted by a young boy.

Well, you could say young boys and young men outwitted Hollywood movie executives in this instance too. The movie was made with them in mind. …. But they stayed away in droves.

Our colleague Steven Zeitchik breaks down the reasons why “Jack the Giant Slayer” flopped, including its quizzical name (is Jack a giant who kills? Or is he a killer of giants?), a violence-heavy trailer and a PG-13 rating.

Unfortunately for “Jack,” his problems may only get worse.

“Jack the Giant Slayer” debuted (perhaps inexplicably) one week before “Oz the Great and Powerful” rolls into theaters, competing for box office dollars.

–Rene Lynch


Composing wizard Danny Elfman talks sweeping, gigantic ‘Oz’ score

‘Oz the Great and Powerful’: Mila Kunis and Rachel Weisz catch fire

‘Oz: The Great and Powerful’: Robert Stromberg on Raimi, Burton, Baum


16 Responses to ‘Jack the Giant Slayer’ snuffed out at box office

  1. Heather Ferreira says:

    It's the branding. No male alive over the age of 11 is going to admit to friends or a girlfriend he bought a ticket to "Jack and the Beanstalk". Would have been better to just rip off the fairy tale, change the lead's name and make the pic be just about giant slayers in general.

  2. Mark Howard says:

    Jack in this movie is not a boy. he's treated like one but it would have been better to have been a 12 year old. This lead does not appeal to kids, would have been better as a cartoon.

  3. Mark Howard says:

    Jack in this movie is not a boy. he's treated like one but it would have been better to have been a 12 year old. This lead does not appeal to kids, would have been better as a cartoon.

  4. scuffy says:

    Would the movie have worked better with a few gay vampires thrown in.

    • PeriSoft says:

      Honestly, the same can be said of pretty much any movie. 'Frost/Nixon', for example, immediately comes to mind.

  5. Kathy Corcoran says:

    it's too bad the film didn't do well. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and will see it next weekend with the rest of my family. It's on a par with Stardust, almost as good as the Pirates movies, and approaches the level of Princess Bride! (According to this article, that would be an off-putting title.)

  6. Richard Graham says:

    Sorry, much as I wanted to enjoy the film I kept finding myself wondering why it seemed so…childish and randomly yukky. The 2-headed dude popping the top on an armored soldier snack and burping as he spits out the armor…not even a bone, eh? The villains almost but not quite becoming vile and revolting, Bremner doing far better than his boss played by Tucci. Romance, childish concoctions falling far short of couples past in Batman, Pirates or whatever. It felt like someone was tearing pages, or parts of pages from past successes, larding in impressive CGI and expecting a hit. Fail, I want a refund. And a re-run of Aladdin from Disney…far more satisfying in every way.

  7. marshall says:

    Gosh, I took my 11 year-old son and we loved it. I think they did a great job. It was very entertaining and believable throughout. It's the kind of motion picture that looks absolutely fantastic on the big screen.

  8. T.Doom says:

    I'm trying to remember the first movie that triggered the whole "<name your fairly tale> slayer/hunter" phenomenon. How many of these do we have now? Abe the Vampire Hunter, H & G Witch Hunters, Jack the Giant Slayer… what's next, Red the Wolf Slayer? Oh wait…

  9. @jniquej says:

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion. I don't care what they say. I enjoyed this movie, which I watched with my 13-year-old and her friend. They were engulfed in it! It has lessons in morality and it was overall "clean" unlike most movies now-a-days. I also think the lead did a great job. He was also good in his other movie "Warm Bodies". Everyone's a critic. If this is not your "cup of tea", then don't watch and don't comment ;)

  10. Fran says:

    This was a really fun movie – I went with my husband (no children) and saw it in IMAX 3D and had a great time! Someone else mentioned Princess Bride – this reminded me of that as well. The lead (Nicholas Hoult) was completely likable and funny, and believable in all the action sequences. The romance was good as well – nothing soppy, and the princess was cute and fiesty without being annoying. The Giants were much better than the trolls in the Hobbit – some of them were gross, but the whole audience was groaning and laughing and kids sitting in front of us thought it was hilarious. Ewan McGregor was a highlight for me. I really hope this movie does well because they should make more movies like this.

  11. Terry says:

    Went with a buddy and thought it was great! Don't understand the bad press at all. They have no adventure left in them I suppose. Too many crabby old men. Some idiots think it should be like other crap they have seen (Batman, Pirates) but it's not the same kind of tal at all. You just don;t get it and too bad for you! Take your kid and you'll love it!

  12. petee says:

    I did not see the movie yet, I guess that makes me a majority of the population. I did however read the book and watch the cartoon when I was about 8 years old; however in my defence I also read tge whole Illiad and most of the nancy drew mysteries by the time I was 8 yrs old and found them all equally commical.

  13. beth says:

    is it appropriate for a bunch of 9 year old boys?

  14. Regina says:

    Hey…I thoroughly enjoyed the movie with my hubby. It was a fantastic 2-hour adventure for both of us. Good, clean fun, entertainment and laughs interspersed with some violence, romance and thrills! There wasn't one dull moment for us and the visual effects were good. The negative write-ups about this movie are not warranted. This movie is definitely a thumbs-up for us and I would urge you all to go watch it!

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