On paper, a $45 million crime story that came bearing a cast full of recognizable names and cinematography from the incomparable Roger Deakins that was based on a best-selling and widely acclaimed novel would be capable of drawing in a crowd, but hardly anybody bothered to catch The Goldfinch in theaters.
A 25 percent Rotten Tomatoes score does highlight that critics weren’t particularly enthused by the film, but a 72 percent user rating indicates that people who saw the end product were left suitably impressed. And yet, John Crowley’s literary adaptation scored one of the worst box office opening weekends of all-time, and was quickly shuffled out of theaters in double-quick time.
Warner Bros. knew they had a misfire on their hands after a string of disastrous test screenings, which saw the studio almost entirely abandon any semblance of a marketing campaign, leading to The Goldfinch‘s $2.6 million debut to rank as the sixth-worst in history for any project premiering on over 2500 screens.
A $50 million loss later, and you’d be forgiven for forgetting it even existed, unless of course you’re one of the many iTunes subscribers responsible for sending the maligned failure rocketing up the platform’s global rankings, as per FlixPatrol.
It’s never a good look when the production companies responsible for a pic give up on it months before release, but cutting their noses to spite their faces in regards to The Goldfinch only ended up hitting Warner Bros. and Amazon Studios right where it hurt them most; in the pocket.