NEARLY 3,000 fans of John Carter are campaigning for a sequel as Disney’s Martian sci-fi epic defies the doomsayers to top the UK box office and open with more than $100million worldwide.
With a budget reported as an astronomical $250million – but rumoured to be even higher – and abysmal marketing, the film was widely expected to be a complete flop.
Mixed reviews from critics didn’t help to give the film a strong sales pitch and it’s true to say that the US launch was disappointing, with John Carter making $30.2million and debuting at No2, unable to nudge Universal’s animated feature The Lorax from holding on to the top spot for a second week.
But it did fairly well overseas, taking almost £71million. In the UK, the film has topped the box office chart, knocking The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel into second place.
With one report claiming John Carter will have to make $700million to justify another instalment, there isn’t an easy road ahead. It’s is still a long way from earning its money back, let alone making a profit or getting a sequel, but the financial omens are better than first thought.
Among those especially keen for a follow-up to happen are the fans on a new Facebook group called Take Me Back To Barsoom! I want John Carter to have a sequel!
Director Andrew Stanton has revealed he has started work on the script for a follow-up and had structured the first film with a trilogy in mind. He told /Film: “I had to make a decision before we even started this one that even conceptually would we want to do a trilogy if the opportunity came, because it would have changed how we were going to tell this story.
“I thought that was smart because, from a fan standpoint, I just wanted someone to start the series going, whether it changed director’s hands or anything. My agenda was: Could I start the engine going?