MOVIES

Fantasy Movie Box Office Bombs That Are Actually Worth Watching

“Matilda” is another Roald Dahl adaptation that did an outstanding job at nailing the source material while failing to meet expectations at the box office. The film, which was co-produced and directed by Danny DeVito, cost $36 million to make but brought in just $33.4 million. It’s considered a classic children’s movie today, so what went wrong?

The film’s financial failure can be attributed to several factors, including a packed release schedule when it premiered: “Matilda” competed for ticket sales against “A Time to Kill,” “Independence Day,” and “Jack.” Another problem the film faced was a smaller existing fan base compared to Dahl’s other works. It’s well known today, but “Matilda” simply wasn’t one of the author’s most famous works at the time.

That being said, it’s still surprising that “Matilda” didn’t even manage to break even. It’s a well-made film with some great performances, especially from Mara Wilson, who shines as the titular telekinetic child genius who gets neglected by her family. It’s hardly surprising that it blew up in the home video market and continues to find viewers decades later via streaming.

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