Will Eisner’s classic, iconic hero fails to generate excitement at the Box Office


Deadline Hollywood Daily‘s wonderful Nikki Finke reports on the Christmas weekend box office, noting that The Spirit was slow out of the gate, opening at #9.

9. The Spirit (Lionsgate)
$6.5M 3-day weekend… $10.3M 4-day holiday
Not every comic book can become a hit movie. Movie analysts didn’t expect much life from this adaptation of Will Eisner’s graphic novels despite a flashy marketing campaign. Lionsgate shouldn’t have tried to brave the Christmas competition.

I had my doubts about The Spirit – it looked like style over substance, and it appears it’s opening failed to spark a buzz among moviegoers.

It had a lot going against it.  The Spirit is a classic comic strop character but doesn’t have much of a following these days.  The film was made and distributed by Lionsgate, the home of lousy, modern era exploitation and fad movies.  The cast was populated by some good looking women, but without much regard to what they would bring to their roles.  The ubiquitous Samuel Jackson is in the cast, too, and he has descended well into self parody these days.  And of course, we had writer/director Frank Miller, who has been consistently stinking up the big screen since he ‘wrote’ Robocop 2.

So maybe it just wasn’t in the cards.  Still, I think if the Spirit’s sidekick, Ebony, was prominent in the film, it may have worked!

Better luck next time…