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So How Did Bros Do During It's Second Week In Theaters?

After everyone and their mother reported last week how Billy Eichner's wannabe historical queer rom-com failed to get butts in seats at theaters around the United States (he blamed straight people for not showing up to a movie centered around two cis gay white men BTW), I was curious to find out how did it do it's second week in theaters.

The $22 million dollar film, which stars and is co-written by Billy Eichner can be seen on 3,300 screens, but grossed $4.8 million opening weekend.

Week two it got it's ass kicked once again by Smile, which remains the number one movie in America for the second week in a row. Bros dropped 55% it's second week, coming in eighth place at $2.1 million.

Bros wasn't the only mainstream film that tanked hard at the box office. Amsterdam, which stars Rami Malek, Robert DeNiro, Margot Robbie, Christian Bale, John David Washington and Taylor Swift grossed $6.5 million on a $60 million dollar budget.

Harvey Fierstein, who has a brief role in Bros and has starred in films such as Mrs. Doubtfire, Independence Day and Torch Song Trilogy, gave his thoughts on where he feels where Universal went wrong in regards to marketing the rom-com to a wider audience.

Here's what he said while sitting on the New York Festival panel for Bros:

“I mean, ‘Is this a history lesson or a movie?’,” he said. “I didn’t think it was really smart, I think sometimes, you have to let the audience find you. Let them discover you, let them fall in love with you. Because the movie is too good. … It’s just really human, and had the audience been allowed to find it on their own, I think they would have easier.”

Eichner pushed back slightly against this, praising Universal for its support and saying, “There wasn’t much of a blueprint for this movie when it came to the marketing and all of that.”

And Billy's push back to Fierstein's comment is exactly the problem.

Like I said in my previous posts about Bros, I love the fact that they took a risk by giving openly queer artists the opportunity to appear as central characters in a mainstream film. The way they promoted the film felt more like a history lesson and a pat on the back for Billy rather than something that feels authentic and less lecture-y.

I also don't think it would have made a difference if he recast Chris Evans in the Luke Macfarlane role, as he stated to Deadline. If Billy would have cast Chris in his role it probably would have made more money. I mean, who wouldn't want to see America's ass get plowed on the big screen?

The reality of the matter is Bros is a niche film made for a niche market. Your intentions may have been for mainstream acceptance, but the film lacked cross-over appeal which in the end QPOC, and the straight allies he was pandering to didn't rush out to see it. Even Billy Eichner's appeal is limited to a small part of the gay community.

Plus, October is the time where people want to be scared because it's Halloween month. I really feel if the marketing was better, and they would have released it during Pride month, it probably would have had a better turn out at the box office.

I just hope the failure of this film doesn't defer mainstream studios like Universal from wanting to make mainstream films centering around queer people in the future, because we do want to see ourselves represented on the big screen. But those stories need to move beyond tropes centered around white, cis gay men.

Move beyond the dated rom-com genre, and take a risk with a queer horror film or maybe even a gay superhero movie or an action film.

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