Solo is the first Star Wars flop and marketing is being blamed

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Solo: A Star Wars Story (Credit: Disney/Lucasfilm)

Solo: A Star Wars Story could be in line to lose Lucasfilm and Disney more than $50 million, according to reports.

It’s reckoned that the movie’s final box office haul will top out at around $400 million (nearly £300 million), which, when its $250 million production budget and multi-million dollar marketing campaign are taken into consideration, will spell a substantial loss for the studios.

But it’s the latter issue that could be the cause of the problem, according to one leading movie business analyst.

Via Deadline, veteran media analyst Doug Creutz has issued a report to investors regarding the potency of Disney shares which details the issues, and it’s less likely, as some have suggested, related to ‘Star Wars fatigue’.

Nor is it likely to be the proximity of The Last Jedi, seeing as Marvel has managed to unleash four movies (Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War and Deadpool 2) in six months, with no ill box office effects.

And the whole re-shoots and replacement director business is deemed a bit too ‘inside baseball’ for most movie goers to care about.

No, it’s reckoned that what with the first teaser only appearing 108 days before release, a lacklustre display of Disney marketing most likely failed the movie.

Alden Ehrenreich (Credit: AFP Photo/Jamie McCarthy)

“Disney’s marketing department, in our opinion, had one job: sell audiences on Alden Ehrenreich as Han Solo (who we thought did a creditable job in the movie with very tough shoes to fill),” the report reads.

“The teaser, by our count, only had about 10 seconds of screen time where Ehrenreich’s face was clearly in the picture – not, in our opinion, nearly enough.

“In general, we felt like the Solo marketing campaign didn’t get fully up to speed until about a month before the movie came out, and that is simply too short of a window for a big franchise picture.”

As for the future, however, things will likely bounce back, even after a previously unthinkable Star Wars flop.

“All in all, we expect that 2019’s Star Wars Episode IX will do quite well at the box office,” the report continues, “probably exceeding Last Jedi, and that other Star Wars Story films will likely average closer to Rogue One than Solo, assuming Disney can execute on quality and marketing.”

Star Wars: Episode IX is due out on December 19, 2019.

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