With Dwayne Johnson’s confirmation that a Black Adam sequel will not be moving forward (for now) at DC Studios, it’s probably a good time to wrap-up negative stories on the film. But of course, there has to be at least one more, and it has to do with the financials, which are becoming clearer.
In recent weeks there has been some debate between the trades whether Black Adam would actually turn a profit. One story said the film would be a dud that loses $100M or more, while another, rumored to have been pushed by Johnson, said it would profit and lead to sequels and spinoffs.
So who’s right? Well, those who had Black Adam falling into the red, that’s who. In THR‘s report, the initial budget of $190M was pumped up to a staggering $260M after a bad test screening led to reshoots. Oof. When you throw in the cost of marketing, probably around $100M for a superhero movie of this size, and the mere $391M box office, Black Adam definitely fell short.
That’s what the narrative will be. The film lost money, and that was probably a factor in James Gunn and Peter Safran deciding to move on from it.
I like to take the long view of these things, though. Black Adam will eventually turn a profit. Movies exist in perpetuity; there will be rights fees and merchandising that will last forever. So Johnson isn’t wrong. Or at least he won’t be someday.