HOLLYWOOD, Aug. 8 (UPI) -- The much-hyped and much-anticipated Fantastic Four reboot got off to a dismal start at the North American box office Friday -- playing in nearly 4,000 theaters nationwide, but only taking in a fraction of its expected haul.
Analysts estimated the film earned $11 million on Friday, the Hollywood Reporter observed, which they say puts it on track for a $28 million debut weekend -- placing it in a tight contest with Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation, which has already been playing in theaters for a week.
The film reportedly cost $120 million to produce and would likely require well in excess of $200 million to generate a profit, after accounting for marketing and distribution costs.
If the film's expected weekend haul bears out, it would be one of the lowest openings ever for a major studio superhero film. The previous two entries in the franchise, released in 2005 ($56M opening) and 2007 ($58M), combined to earn nearly $620 million at the international box office.
"A year ago I had a fantastic version of this. And it would've received great reviews," he tweeted Thursday, suggesting that he differed with 20th Century Fox on the film's outcome. "You'll probably never see it. That's reality though."
The tweet was quickly deleted from Trank's Twitter account.
"Fantastic Four, despite the dogged efforts of its talented young cast, has nothing," New York Times critic A.O. Scott wrote.
The last major studio big-budget superhero film to disappoint at the box office was 2011's The Green Hornet, by Sony, which earned just $33 million in its debut weekend. However, the film still went on to earn nearly $230 million worldwide on a $120 million budget.
Sony suffered yet another lackluster superhero opening the following year with its sequel to Ghost Rider, which earned just $22 million in its opening weekend. However, that movie earned $132 million worldwide on a $57 million budget.