OPINION: Superhero Films Overshadow Original Films
Stop me if you've heard this before. “I'm tired of superhero films, they're coming out one after another. We should be getting something new.” I'm sure you've heard that said from a moviegoer before. Then when a superhero film does come out, they go out and see it. Oh, and that “something new” type of film they were asking for, ignored.
Superhero films overshadow new and original films and it's hurting these filmmakers because of how much time and effort they put in only to bomb at the box office. A prime example would be back in October and the release of Venom in the first weekend. The week after, Bad Times at the El Royale released and finished well below Venom. Just how bad? It finished 7th in the box office race, earning $7.2 million that weekend. Granted, not everyone is that one moviegoer that wants something new and would choose a superhero film in a heartbeat but to see a film under perform like that, with those types of numbers is mind boggling!
There is no question that superhero films are ruling the industry this day in age. This year alone, the top two highest grossing films are Avengers: Infinity War and Black Panther. Want to know where an original film is on the list? In the 10th spot, A Quiet Place. The rest are sequels mixed in with the superhero films. That shouldn't even come as a surprise.
So what is it about original films not getting the love as superhero films? Could it be that originality doesn't come across as interesting to moviegoers anymore? Could it happen to do with some poor promotional work, maybe the marketing doesn't capture the target audience's attention? Or could it be that the Rotten Tomatoes score keeps audiences away from a film?
Whatever the case may be, the fact is superhero films won't look to take a break anytime soon. Not everyone is getting tired of the trend or see any fatigue happening. However, that shouldn't be a reason original films should under perform at the box office. Moviegoers should take the time and watch these new films, whatever way they'd like to.
What also plays a factor is the scheduling. While most superhero films tend to aim towards the summer season, they are starting to hit for the slow seasons as well. This past spring saw the release of Avengers: Infinity War as it moved away from a packed May. Next month, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse will be released followed by Aquaman the following weekend. In 2019, Captain Marvel will be released in late March, a rare time of month superhero films are released. Superhero films are not only adding up but spreading around as well. As a result, it makes it tough for studios to schedule their original films without meeting a superhero film that month.
I'm not saying superhero films should stop, as a moviegoer, I appreciate them. What bothers me is that other moviegoers are not seeing films that could equally be as good as the superhero films. Whether a film is bad or not, superhero films are having moviegoers ignore original work. It shouldn't be that way. Superhero films can pick any release date they would like but moviegoers should take a crack at what other filmmakers do every once in a while as well.