It's also worth noting that Snow White and the Huntsman is the second action / adventure movie featuring women in key roles – Kristen Stewart's Snow White, Charlize Theron's Evil Queen Ravenna – that has performed strongly at the domestic box office. Starring Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen, Gary Ross' The Hunger Games is one of 2012's biggest box office hits, having to date collected $398.74 million.
Meanwhile, with the exception of Disney's all-star The Avengers, male-dominated action / fantasy flicks have mostly been box office disappointments – or downright bombs – at the U.S. and Canada box office, e.g., Andrew Stanton / Taylor Kitsch's John Carter with a cume of $72.58m; Will Smith / Tommy Lee Jones' Men in Black III, which opened about $10-15 million below expectations; another Taylor Kitsch action movie, the Peter Berg-directed Battleship, which, as mentioned in the previous post, has grossed $55 million after three weekends; and Tim Burton / Johnny Depp's costly (see below) fantasy comedy Dark Shadows, with $70.83 million after four weekends.
As mentioned in the first part of this four-part SWATH article, Snow White and the Huntsman cost $170 million. Here are a few budget comparisons: Men in Black III cost anywhere between $225m-$300m, Wrath of the Titans cost $150m, Battleship $209 million, John Carter $250m, The Avengers $225 million, Dark Shadows $150m, Tim Burton / Johnny Depp / Mia Wasikowska's Alice in Wonderland $200m, and Gary Ross / Jennifer Lawrence / Liam Hemsworth's The Hunger Games $78 million.
Box Office: Snow White and the Huntsman vs. Mirror Mirror
Much was said about two Snow White movies being made (and released) back to back: Relativity Media's Mirror Mirror and Universal's Snow White and the Huntsman. Initially, Universal moved the release date of its Snow White film so it would come out before Relativity's. But then Relativity retaliated by moving up the release date of its own Snow White film. [Check out the duel of the two Snow White movies.]
The end result was that Relativity's Mirror Mirror hit worldwide screens in March. Directed by Tarsem Singh, and starring Oscar winner Julia Roberts as the Evil Queen, Lily Collins as Snow White, and Armie Hammer as Prince Charming, Mirror Mirror presented the Snow White fairy tale as a light, child-oriented comedy. Reviews were tepid: 50 percent approval rating among Rotten Tomatoes' "overall critics" (5.6/10 average rating) and a poor 37 percent approval rating among RT's "top critics" (5/10 average rating). [Notice that SWATH's Rotten Tomatoes' approval ratings – in regard to "top" vs. "overall" critics – was the opposite of Mirror Mirror's.]
Reportedly budgeted at $85 million – half the Snow White and the Huntsman production budget – Mirror Mirror debuted with a disappointing $18.13 million, going on to cume at $62.54 million in the U.S. and Canada. As is usually the case with fantasy, action, and adventure movies, Mirror Mirror performed better overseas, bringing in $97.9 million. Its top territories were the United Kingdom, Russia/CIS (includes most of the former Soviet Union), and Brazil.
["Box Office: MIRROR MIRROR vs. SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN" continues on the next page. See link below.]
Sam Claflin as Prince Charming / Snow White and the Huntsman picture: Alex Bailey / Universal Pictures.