Marketing is the most significant thing to make or break a movie. Unfortunately, some films fell off the map due to bad marketing. A user asked the forum, “Movies that fell off the map due to bad marketing?” 

The original poster added, “I am interested in movies that just totally flopped due to bad marketing. Here is my list.

  1. Her Smell. It was one of my favorites of that year.
  2. The Adventures of Baron Munchausen. It is a pull-all-the-stop fantasy with Terry Gilliam at the helm.
  3. Edge of Tomorrow. I couldn’t get the name right and switched it.
  4. Dredd is awesome but marketed as gimmicky 3d.
  5. Shame. No one talks about this movie.”

Here are the top responses. 


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“Treasure Planet. Disney sent it out to die against the first Harry Potter movie.”


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“Whenever I try to tell people about Walk Hard, they all think it’s a severe biopic about someone they never heard of because that’s how it was marketed.

It’s legitimately one of the funniest films I’ve ever seen. John Christopher Reilly is incredible.”


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“‘Upgrade’ would’ve made at least $80 million with a proper marketing budget and a wide release.”


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“Warrior (2011). The marketing for this movie was so bad that they asked famous sports podcaster and former ESPN (Entertainment and Sports Programming Network) radio host Ryen Russillo to host a premier event for the film. 

Russillo prepped for days to ensure he had enough background on the film’s director and stars. He even went out, bought a nice suit, and told his date to wear something nice to the event. 

But given that this movie wasn’t given care for marketing, Russillo would later learn ‘the premier’ was to take place at a local movie theater with no cast, crew, or promotion done for the event. He had to change into his suit in the men’s bathroom to add insult to injury.

He introduced the movie to many high school kids and other random people. The movie never had a chance to make money.”


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“John Carter. I think some Disney executives leaped off rather tall roofs after that.”


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“Blade Runner 2049. They thought the name would sell itself, but sadly, they were wrong.”


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“Sing Street, for sure. With a competent marketing team, that movie would have done very well.”


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“Frank is the fictionalized adaptation of Jon Ronson’s accurate life biography about Frank Sidebottom, a British performer who disguised his face with a papier-mache head.

Michael Fassbender plays Frank and, despite wearing an oversized head nearly the entire film, gives a genuinely affecting performance.

Frank is just stunning as a statement, and if you’ve ever been in a band, the experience of being around and jealous of creative genius feels so authentic. It was a film unfairly advertised as uproariously funny, and it often is, but it’s also more subdued and nuanced than at first glance.”


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“Strange Days. It had an okay theatrical run but barely exists on blu-ray. Let’s see, this slick science-fiction thriller is set on Dec 31st, 1999, and the Millennium is coming up. Let’s not market this.”


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“Cats don’t Dance. Brilliantly animated, beautifully performed, barely known. Every song in the film is catchy and fun, too. Good pick.”


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“Idiocracy. Glad to see Munchausen on your list. I love all of Terry Gilliam’s movies. Such a unique vision/storyteller.”


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“Odd Thomas. It barely made a splash, but it’s a fantastic thriller/dark comedy, sadly one of Anton Yelchin’s last roles. Rest in peace.”


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“The most famous example of this is probably The Princess Bride. For over a decade, the book upon which the movie is based was considered unadaptable to film. When the film was finally made, the studio had no idea how to market it. As a result, the film performed very poorly in theaters. Fortunately, it found its audience on home video, and the rest is history.”


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“‘Big Trouble in Little China’ is the obvious answer for me. It’s a great film and now has a large following, but it died on arrival in cinemas because of a dreadful marketing campaign.”


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“The King’s Man. It also didn’t help that it got released between The Matrix and Spider-Man.”


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“Birds of Prey. They even changed the name to Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey because no one seemed to know (or care) this was part of the Warner Bros superhero cinematic universe.”


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“Pacific Rim. It’s a cracking monster versus aliens movie, where almost everything else in those genres (like Transformers or recent Godzilla and Kong movies) is flat, boring, or stupid. Some argument between business people led to it not getting the big release it should have done.”


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“The Man from Uncle! Such a good film, utterly overlooked due to stupid release date, and thus no sequel.”

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This article was originally published on Mrs. Daaku Studio.

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