2016 was a tough year for sequels. Unless it had a superhero, a Pixar character, or Tyler Perry in a dress, at best it disappointed at the box office. At worst it outright tanked. Among that number was Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows, and its performance means the Turtles won’t be back on big screens for a while.
Collider has a fairly interesting and honest interview with producer Andrew Form, who reveals everyone on the movie was stunned by its fairly quiet box office:
From our first Super Bowl teaser to everything we launched, we felt so good about our material, and for some reason it did not find the audience that the first movie found. And we talk about it all the time, and we tried to figure it out, but we cannot put our finger on what happened. We really can’t.
Form goes on to say that while the franchise overall isn’t dead to Hollywood, Out Of The Shadows likely isn’t getting any sort of follow-up, which isn’t terribly surprising in light of what happened. As to why the Turtles couldn’t fill theaters, to be fair, it’s part of a larger problem in Hollywood right now that can’t just be ascribed to sequels. Hollywood is on a legendary cold streak; this time last year, Jem And The Holograms set the record for the lowest wide opening ever barely a few months after Zac Efron’s We Are Your Friends made a run at that title. While there hasn’t been anything quite of the magnitude of that, so far, 2016 has consistently seen sequels hit #1 at the box office and then sink like a rock the next weekend. The Turtles won’t being hanging out at the pizza joint forever, but until Hollywood gets it together, they might as well order another pie.