Industry NewsOpinion

‘Bros’ Director Blasts Audiences for Film’s Box Office Failure

Nicholas Stoller: 'It's almost like people don’t know what’s good for them'

If anyone could bring comedy back to the cineplex, it’s Nicholas Stoller.

The writer/director previously delivered hits like “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” “Get Him to the Greek,” “The Muppets” and “Neighbors.”

Now, with theatrical comedies on life support, Stoller is back with “Bros.” The gay rom-com follows two stubbornly single souls (Billy Eichner, Luke Macfarlane) who fall in love despite themselves.

And audiences are staying far, far away from the film.

The film infamously earned $4.8 million on its opening weekend, a far cry from its $22 million budget and reported $30-40 million marketing costs.

Billy Eichner Decries Homophobia After Dismal 'Bros' Box Office Opening | THR News

Hollywood news outlets have been wringing their hands over the film’s failure since last weekend. Now, the far-Left Hollywood reporter is asking Stoller and “Bros” co-star Guy Branum what explains the box office results.

Branum claims his marketing ideas were roundly rejected by Universal, the studio behind the film. Stoller struggles to process the movie’s commercial misfire, citing critical raves for the film (89 percent “fresh” at Rotten Tomatoes) and positive test screenings.

Bros | Official Trailer [HD]

Eichner blamed the straight community for ignoring his film (he co-wrote the screenplay with Stoller). Stoller confirms Eichner’s comments, citing data privy to Universal. The dismal numbers still show most gay Americans chose other movie options last weekend.

The director trotted out other reasons for the film’s failure, including his assertion that Hollywood has “trained” audiences not to see comedy in theaters.

That’s certainly not true of the pre-woke era. Comedies routinely crashed the $100 million mark at the U.S. box office. Think:

  • Bridesmaids” ($169 million)
  • The Hangover 1, 2 and 3” ($277 million, $254 million, $112 million, respectively)
  • Step Brothers” ($100 million)
  • Ted” ($218 million)
  • 22 Jump Street” ($191 million)
  • Neighbors” ($150 million)
  • Pitch Perfect 2 and 3” ($184 million, $104 million, respectively)

Stoller partially blames audiences for not seeking his film out.

“It is very strange just because the movie is so much fun. And as someone who makes comedies for movie theaters — or did until, I guess, this weekend — I love seeing comedies in movie theaters, and people do. It’s almost like people don’t know what’s good for them. [emphasis added]”

Stoller turned his wannabe franchise “Neighbors” into a woke affair, hiring two female screenwriters to bolster its feminist bona fides. That sequel, “Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising,” made $95 million less than its predecessor, killing the franchise in the process.

What the “Bros” director doesn’t realize is how the culture is to blame for “Bros” failure. Big screen comedies can no longer entertain like they once did. Even tepid fare like “Snatched” and “Get Hard” endure withering reviews for being “problematic.”

That mindset handcuffs artists, reducing the jokes they can tell in the process. Even far-Left comics like “Desus & Mero” self-censor for fear of Cancel Culture fallout.

It’s also why “Hangover” director Todd Phillips left the genre to direct 2019’s “Joker.”

Todd Phillips Says "Woke Culture" Drove Him from Comedy to Joker - Movie Talk

Stoller ignores how too many Hollywood stars alienate potential audiences. Eichner is a prime example, using his Twitter account and public appearances to excoriate anyone with whom he disagrees on politics.

Plus, audiences are exhausted by the Left’s weaponizing culture in every forum possible. That “Bros” trailer suggests the film is more of the same, mocking straight people, extolling an LGBTQ+ museum subplot and proudly sharing characters engaged in a “throuple.”

The “Bros” director’s comic timing remains on-point throughout his new film. He might want to step outside his Hollywood bubble, though, to understand why so many Americans, both straight and gay, didn’t line up to see “Bros.”


  1. Let’s take a look at the reality which might not be politically correct to mention. Gay people are less than 10% of the population. The movie was put out there trying to capture a lot more than that in order to make money. As a straight guy, I would assume watch a rom com between a guy and a horse. So there was never really a market for this movie to consume this content let alone pay for it. If 80% plus people were gay, sure: this movie would have done well

  2. The director should be ashamed of himself he had an opportunity to what I believed when I seen the commercials or the viewing at the theater when I first seen it and believing that it was going to be about the gay and lesbian community about us ourselves about who we were in this day and age with the legislators trying to keep our folks from being able to achieve whether they’re young folks that are transgender from trying to pay sports or trying to overturn the marriage laws as they are in the supreme Court or just playing right out hate that is returning from what it used to be I thought it was going to be a movie like that but instead it was just another Love story millions of dollars wasted for an opportunity that was there to change and help so if he’s unhappy with the way things went he can bite himself if he’s like us he had an opportunity to help us out as a community not hurt us and a lot of folks didn’t go to the theater for the fear of being pointed out it was like being an illegal showing up at a certain site where you might get deported and that was the basic aim that I thought a lot of people might have thought if you showed up and droves at the theater even if you weren’t gay lesbian by etc people would think that you was even if you weren’t so Mr director next time preview it for audiences let him know what it is it was a comedy it was a romance it wasn’t a documentary the way your commercials that is to believe that it was so if you’re unhappy that’s your problem think about it next time mister

  3. Saw “Bros” last week. It has its moments but overall pretty mediocre. Basically we get to listen to Billy Eichner’s very personal rant on the LGBTQ community for two hours. Luke Macfarlane is nice to look at, but ultimately Eichner’s character is a sanctimonious, know-it-all, narcissist. The hackneyed tropes about gay men and gay life border on the embarrassing. Kind’a glad people are staying away.

  4. This movie was going to fail all along. 1) The intended audience makes up a small percentage of the population. The marketing also wasn’t done correctly 2) Lack of star power and recognizable faces. It might not have been as bad with at least one or two familiar names in the cast. They don’t have to be A-list. The only name I recognized in the cast is Bowen Yang from SNL but I don’t watch it that often 3) They chose a bad time to release the film this close to Halloween especially with films like Hocus Pocus 2, Hellraiser, and Halloween Ends coming out. October also usually but not always tends to be one of the worst months at the box office. An August or early September release date would have been better. 4) One of the biggest factors is declining movie sales during the pandemic. The movie should have been released immediately to streaming or had a limited release in select areas for a short time before going to streaming instead of a wide-release. You combine all these things and no wonder you get a box-office disaster.

  5. Terrific — another pompous, entitled left-wing Hollywood a**hole excoriating the audience for not being smart enough to see that his work is brilliant.

    The open market has a wonderful way of sorting out what’s good and what isn’t. Look, you produced a giant, unfunny, unrelatable stink bomb of a movie that didn’t appeal to a mass audience, and apparently those who did see it thought it sucked. Regardless of whether or not you think you have some sort of message that people who “don’t know what’s good for them” need to consume, the fact is you were ignored. First, make a movie that people will actually want to see. Second, enough already with the pretentious moralizing, politics and condescension — people at this point are beyond fatigued and resent you arrogant Hollywood types and the crapola content that you push as entertainment. Frankly, I’m delighted this movie tanked.

  6. I don’t think this film is well understood and it will take many years for it to be appreciated. I went to see it right away. We are currently experiencing a backlash against gay people inspired by the orange man. Once again people are disgusted when they think of two men together. Well how about this. Why don’t you straight people stay out of our gay clubs then. Get the hell out. You’re always there. And get out of the cities that we made beautiful. Don’t live in your boring suburbs. We don’t need you looking at our art and living in our spaces. You ruin everything. We’re just fine without you. We’re better without you. Keep your women out of our gay clubs. They’re always in there because they can’t stand you. I’m sick of it.

    1. Billy, is this you?

      So you’re telling straight people to make little use of you because they didn’t watch this crappy movie?

      Brokeback Mountain made 171 million dollars. You aren’t experiencing a backlash because of the orange man. You’re experiencing backlash because you label people bigots because they don’t support wveryhting that you do.

      You try to force people into your ideology in the name of who you sleep with and no one cares.

      You’re just like Billy. You think you’re owed something because you’re gay. I have news for you…YOU’RE NOT SPECIAL NECAIS YOU SLEEP WITH MEN.

      You don’t own cities. And with crime skyrocketing, you can have them.

      No one will care about this movie years later. It wasn’t groundbreaking and not even gay people wanted to see it.

  7. Of all the articles I’ve read speculating on why “Bros” is such a flop, this is the only one which comes close to getting it. Eichner wrings his hands, bewildered about how a movie receiving wonderful, rave reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and elsewhere is just being ignored by most everyone else. What he doesn’t seem to understand is that he, most movie reviewers, and Hollywood all reside in their own little bubble. And any reviewer who didn’t toe the line would be instantly ostracized and excoriated as “homophobic”, as Eichner himself has demonstrated. Writer Christian Toto summed it up succinctly when he said “audiences are exhausted by the Left’s weaponizing culture in every forum possible”. Bingo.

  8. I’ll state the obvious… What do you expect when the premise of your movie adheres to less than 5% of the entire population? Your target audience makes up LESS than a few percents of your average viewership. You make content that even FEWER than that actually wants to see (I have not heard of too many LGBT advocates actually ASKING, much less BEGGING for a homosexual comedy). You set yourself up for an abysmal opening from the get-go.

    The idiotic part is when you try to blame the nonexistent audience for a poor performance. That sort of lack of logic is exactly why this director has fallen off. Neighbors was genuinely funny for the large majority of the film. This wasn’t. This movie showcased how out of touch he is with not just film making, but comedy in general. It has nothing to do with the audience. Like, Sonic was a hit BECAUSE the studio sided with the audience. How do you expect to get good numbers if you’re insulting your audience.

    And speaking of insulting the audience, remember what I said about 5% of the population? Yeah that means conversely there is greater than 90% chance that it’ll be a straight person who watches this film. Guess what this film does? Every other joke is literally an insult to straight people. (Sorry to admit) I watched this film specifically to see why it did so bad, and yeah… Not only is it pandering to the smallest audience, but it HEAVILY leans into near-propaganda type commentary. It’s less of a comedy and more of a opinion piece on why straight couples suck and why society sucks because everyone isn’t gay. From brown-nosing every liberal agenda, to straight up demonizing heterosexuals, this film just sucks.

    I won’t even get to criticizing the story… Because there wasn’t any good story, dialogue, build up, etc.

    In short, this movie, from advertising to production to performance, fails. It was an “ok” movie (I mean hey, critics love it), but at the end of the day, most people just don’t want to sit through a movie to have gay porn shoved down their eye holes every 20 minutes.

  9. The little bits I got from Billy from his street thing and on parks and rec, I thought he was cool, ok. But I think he overplayed his shtick.

  10. I am gay and honestly fell asleep. Ha ha Billy is funny in small amounts. Like irritating gay guy on the street.
    His humour does not carry in full length film. I feel bad that it flopped but he also over exaggerated the gay sex lifestyle. There are a few that my subscribe but on the entirety that is the minority. It is treated casually but not as casual as depicted. He is just adding to the stereotype and not doing the gays any favors.

  11. QUICK NOTE from the Editor: I try hard to have everyone express their views on HiT. I edit out profanity as much as possible. If you call someone racist, etc. I will likely remove that, too, unless you can cogently back up your point. No homophobia, either. Not acceptable. I love all the conversation here, and I appreciate the passion. Let’s be as civil as possible, though. Please.

  12. The actor who played in this movie seems to run along the entitled lines of Nancy Pelosi, thinking comments or tweets that he made will not have a pushback. I have not seen the movie, but if it does well on streaming, let it. They should really be allowed to face the consequences of poor timing and the things they say. Movies are not so enjoyable it is so chock full of bratty, entitled characters who undergo no journey that shapes them and makes them a better person with difficult odds.

  13. Let’s update the numbers to October 9. From boxofficemojo: 3356 theaters, $8,894,410 or $265 per theater per day. Theaters don’t stay in business with those kind of numbers. Guess Americans might know what’s good for them. Or they think putting increasingly expensive food on the table is more important in their lives.

  14. I don’t think anyone can criticize it if they haven’t seen it. If rom-coms aren’t your favorite genre, that’s fine. But I enjoyed seeing a romance between two men-something rarely seen on screen. As this movie was marketed for gay people, the question should be why they aren’t supporting this movie.

    1. Maybe because theyre not interested in a person like Billy whose claim to fame is being a mean gay guy who demeans people from parts of the country he doesn’t like.

      Maybe he’s not attractive enough for a rom com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button