The Marvels Is Officially the Lowest Grossing MCU Movie, Disney Will Stop Reporting Grosses

The Marvels is inching toward $200 million globally, the lowest in the MCU.

In its fourth weekend of release, The Marvels has fallen out of the box office top 10 domestically as it brought in just $2.5 million. The Marvels' total box office now sits at $80.7 million domestic and just over $116.3 internationally for a $197 million total, making it the lowest grossing Marvel Cinematic Universe movie by a huge margin. Normally a November release would benefit from residual interest through the month of December and the Christmas holidays, but the audience doens't appear to be showing up for The Marvels and even Disney notes they will no longer be reporting some of its box office totals. 

In a statement, The Walt Disney Company wrote: "With The Marvels box office now winding down, we will stop weekend reporting of international/global grosses on this title." Keep in mind this comes after week four of the film's theatrical run. Going back through the history of the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, this has never happened. Even the second-lowest grossing movie in the MCU, 2008's The Incredible Hulk, managed to stay in the Top 10 at the domestic box office through its first five weeks. Here's how The Marvels stacks up compared to the other films that are at the bottom of the MCU box office:

  • The Marvels – $80,735,186 domestically; $116,300,000 internationally; $197,035,186 globally
  • The Incredible Hulk – $134,806,913 domestically; $130,766,946 internationally; $265,573,859 globally
  • Captain America: The First Avenger$176,654,505 domestically; $193,915,271 internationally; $370,569,776 globally
  • Black Widow – $183,651,655 domestically; $196,099,476 internationally; $379,751,131 globally
  • Eternals - $164,870,264 domestically; $236,861,495 internationally; $401,731,759 globally

The poor box office performance of The Marvels is something that has taken many by surprise, including the leadership at Marvel and Disney. CEO of The Walt Disney Company Bob Iger sounded off on why he believed the film was failing to meet expectations earlier this week, revealing at the NYT DealBook Summit 2023: "The Marvels was shot during COVID, and there wasn't enough supervision on set [from executives,]"

How much money did The Marvels lose?

This is a leading question when considering the larger place of The Marvels at the box office. The film is certainly a bomb and a major disappointment (in a series of major disappointments for Disney this year), but there is more to the success and failure of a movie like this than purely box office numbers (like merchandising and theme park ticket sales). When looking just at that side of it though, the film had a reported budget that was $274.8 million according to Forbes. This number however managed to get a $55 million subsidy because it was filmed in the United Kingdom, meaning that its total number was a little lower at $219.8 million.

Two things must be brought up after that, frequently the public budget numbers revealed for movies of this size are often even bigger than what's reported in the press, only The Walt Disney Company really knows what the movie costs. In addition, the reported budget for a movie of this size does not take into account the advertising and promotion costs, which for a film this big could be another $120 to $150 million (these numbers are never publicly disclosed but are generally considered to be half or slightly more than half of production costs). 

Then there's the film's actual box office totals. As of this writing the movie has brought in just over $197 million worldwide, but the profit here is split between the studio and the exhibitors of the film (the movie theaters). As a result, The Marvels would probably need to bring in over $400 million globally to potentially even begin being profitable. In short, The Marvels may have lost as much as $100 million, and potentially even more, but a number of that magnitude may never be revealed publicly. 

In The Marvels, (now in theaters), Carol Danvers aka Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) has reclaimed her identity from the tyrannical Kree and taken revenge on the Supreme Intelligence. But unintended consequences see Carol shouldering the burden of a destabilized universe. When her duties send her to an anomalous wormhole linked to a Kree revolutionary, her powers become entangled with that of Jersey City super-fan, Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani) aka Ms. Marvel, and Carol's estranged niece, now S.A.B.E.R. astronaut Captain Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris). Together, this unlikely trio must team-up and learn to work in concert to save the universe as "The Marvels." The Marvels will also see the franchise returns of Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Saagar Shaikh as Aamir Khan, Zenobia Shroff as Muneeba Khan, and Mohan Kapur as Yusuf Khan. New cast members include Zawe Ashton, Park Seo-joon, and Shamier Anderson. Produced by Marvel Studios, The Marvels is directed by Nia DaCosta with a script from DaCosta, Megan McDonnell, and Elissa Karasik.