Jon Chu Talks Disappointing “Jem” Opening

There’s no two ways about it, it was a straight up blood bath at the box-office this weekend with four new wide releases opening and all of them being soundly rejected by critics and cinemagoers.

One of the more high-profile flops has been “Jem and the Holograms,” Jon M. Chu’s film adaptation of the classic 1980s cartoon series. Made for only $5 million, the film earned scathing reviews and was soundly rejected by both the existing fanbase and those unfamiliar with the property.

The film is on track to earn roughly $1.2 million in its opening weekend at 2,413 theaters – the worst opening ever for a major studio release playing in at least 2,000 theaters. Chu (“G.I. Joe: Retaliation,” “G.I. Joe 3D”) appeared at the Film Independent Forum on Saturday to deliver the Filmmaker Keynote and admits things did not turn out well:

“So, this is a bit awkward only because I’m supposed to be here this morning talking about how great it is to be in the movie business – it’s so awesome – but currently, I don’t know if you’ve looked at box office numbers, this morning specifically, it hasn’t been the greatest. So you might get some real s–t today. (Laughs).

I get [Jem] fans sending me hate mail, I get death threats, I get racist remarks – it’s a really fun business. Reviewers have been harsh, to say it lightly. Yes, we only made the movie for five [million dollars], but it doesn’t get easy when you hear those [box office] numbers. I’ll probably get some texts along the way today saying it’s not going anywhere. (Laughs) So this morning isn’t the best kind of day.”

The full video of Chu’s speech is up on Youtube. Chu has been having fun talking up the film lately, even suggesting to Cinema Blend a film that would team the “Jem and the Holograms,” “Transformers” and “G.I. Joe” franchises which are all Hasbro properties.