At this point, we should have all read the headlines and the aftermath of what appears to be one of the biggest flops in recent years. However, from what I have read, it would appear that things are mostly focused on the rather unnerving presence of the characters in the uncanny valley more-so than any other aspect of the movie. Rotten Tomatoes has a good smattering of both sides. It seems the story is actually pretty decent and overall, it’s not the worst film ever released. It’s just the characters are so darn fugly.
With the prospect of writing off somewhere in the region of $150 million or more, there would appear to be very few options open to the studio for this rejected project.
Such a statement is true, if looked at in the traditional sense of release windows, DVD sales, cable TV rights and so forth (yeah, broadcast networks figure in ‘so forth’ although they would take the place of cable in Europe).
What if say, Disney looked at this ‘failure’ as an opportunity? “Impossible!” I hear you say. Ah, but such failure can often force companies to experiment and explore new methods of revenue.
For example, the film’s already lost money at the cinema, and is unlikely to reap back its cost in DVD sales either. Would you not agree that this represents a great opportunity for Disney to experiment with online streaming? No, not the kind it does already, but with real, honest-to-goodness online streaming, where everyone can watch and share without restriction?
The film’s already lost money so that is now a sunk cost, they’ll never get that back, but they can focus on exposure. Again, from what I’ve read, the film isn’t as bad as it’s made out to be. Perhaps it’s just because the film’s core audience has not been found yet.
Such an experiment is unlikely to cost them much and it would be useful in allowing the company to figure out where revenue can be made online. They could even play around with things. Like say, “watch Mars Needs Moms online and earn the chance to purchase a signed poster!” or something like that. There are plenty of ways of offering incentives to fans and sadly, a conglomerate like Disney has long since lost the knack of seeking out and exploiting such revenues.