The old-fashioned concept of movie stardom, depending on how you look at it, has been on life support for a long time or just flat-out dead. The premise is simple: actors open a movie, not intellectual property. But even if you had a slightly more positive outlook on the state of movie stardom, the recent film Dolittle should have served as the final nail in the coffin of any hopes you had for a 21st-century movie star. That film’s stumbles at the box office are only further evidence that we no longer have movie stars, just franchises.

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Bad Boys for Life has been dominating the box office since arriving in theaters in the middle of January, but the ladies of Birds of Prey took Will Smith and Martin Lawrence down a peg with some DC Comics action. However, even though the movie starring Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn ended up Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes with an 81% critical score, it only ended up with roughly $33.25 million, opening below the projected $45 million that Warner Bros. Pictures was hoping for.

Get more on the Birds of Prey box office performance below. Read More »

dolittle dragon scene

The post-mortem for Universal’s big-budget disaster Dolittle continues, as the film continues to flounder at the box office and lose millions for the studio. More reports have emerged of the behind-the-scenes troubles that plagued Dolittle, which has struggled to break even with its costly $175 million budget. However, surprisingly, this wasn’t a case of too much studio interference or bad test screenings, but of a star who pitched the idea of a dragon farting in his face.

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weekend box office bad boys for life

Ride together, die together, blow up the box office together: Bad Boys for Life is a hit. The third entry in the action franchise exceeded expectations at the weekend box office, taking in 83% more than initially projected. But while Bad Boys had a good weekend, Dolittle did not. The Robert Downey Jr. film flopped, giving Cats distributor Universal Pictures another box office body blow.

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dolittle behind the scenes problems

Another week, another story about how a box office disaster ended up the way it did. But Dolittle, which is on track to be Universal’s first massive box office bomb of the year, is unique in that these stories are coming right now and not right after release.

By now you’ve probably heard some of the tales of infamy surrounding the $175 million family blockbuster starring Robert Downey Jr. — the nonsensical storyline, the badly CGI’d talking animals, the dragon fart scene. But what you may not know is that most of those problems that Dolittle is currently getting slammed for (with a whopping 19% on Rotten Tomatoes) got added by Universal in a series of costly reshoots and tonal tinkering in an attempt to appeal to a global audience. (Cue dragon fart noise.)

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dolittle character featurettes

Do you spend the entire runtime of a movie trying to pinpoint who that voice coming out of the CGI gorilla belongs to? Then Dolittle is just for you. The new family adventure film starring Robert Downey Jr. revives the classic character for a new generation, complete with CGI animals voiced by way overqualified actors. And Universal Pictures, who probably spent a lot of money getting those actors into the recording booths, is dropping a series of new Dolittle character featurettes to remind you of that all-star cast, which includes the likes of Tom Holland, Emma Thompson, Ralph Fiennes, John Cena, Octavia Spencer, Rami MalekMarion CotillardKumail Nanjiani and more.

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dolittle review

Everyone was a little baffled when Robert Downey Jr. chose to follow his career-defining role as Tony Stark in the Marvel Cinematic Universe with…Dolittle. It turns out, they were right to be. The Stephen Gaghan-directed family adventure film reboots the Doctor Dolittle films, which last saw Eddie Murphy taking on the role of the animal-talking doctor in the 1998 modern-day comedy and its sequels. But Gaghan’s new film, like the 1967 musical starring Rex Harrison, takes more direct inspiration from the Hugh Lofting children’s novels set in the Victorian era. And like the infamously embattled Harrison film, it is a haphazard mess.

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dolittle auditions

Robert Downey Jr.‘s first post-MCU film is Dolittle, a remake of Dr. Dolittle that’s undergone heavy reshoots and seems about as ill-advised as the 1960s adaptation of this same story. In lieu of a new trailer, we instead have a Dolittle auditions video, which features Downey acting alongside some questionable-looking computer-animated animals. Nothing here looks very convincing, which is all the more disheartening when you realize this movie apparently cost $175 million to make.

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Dolittle Trailer

After starring in the highest grossing film of all time this year, Robert Downey Jr. is slumming it with a bunch of animals in Victorian England early next year.

Dolittle puts a new spin on the classic tale of the man known for talking to animals. Looking like a cross between Pirates of the Caribbean, Sherlock Holmes and Life of Pi, the first Dolittle trailer shows off what feels like a haphazard adventure that just so happens to involve Dr. Dolittle. After you watch, you’ll understand why this movie is coming out in January next year. Read More »

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