Billy Eichner says straight people 'just didn't show up' for his movie 'Bros' after it flopped at the box office

Billy Eichner says straight people 'just didn't show up' for his movie 'Bros' after it flopped at the box office
Billy Eichner at the premiere of "Bros"
Billy Eichner at the New York premiere of "Bros" held at AMC Lincoln Square on September 20, 2022 in New York City.Kristina Bumphrey/Variety via Getty Images
  • The new LGBTQ romantic comedy, "Bros," disappointed at the box office over the weekend with $4.8 million.

  • The movie's cowriter and star, Billy Eichner, tweeted that straight people "just didn't show up."

  • The comedy genre has struggled at the box office in recent years.

"Bros," the new romantic comedy cowritten by and starring Billy Eichner, disappointed at the box office in its debut.

The movie, which has been touted as the first major studio rom-com with an all-LGBTQ+ cast, made just $4.8 million over the weekend, below initial studio and analyst projections that placed it between $7 million and $10 million.

Eichner reacted to the box-office performance in a Twitter thread on Sunday, saying that he was "VERY proud" of the movie.

"Even with glowing reviews, great Rotten Tomatoes scores, an A CinemaScore etc, straight people, especially in certain parts of the country, just didn't show up for Bros," Eichner tweeted. "And that's disappointing but it is what it is."

Eichner also claimed that an unspecified theater chain told the movie's distributor, Universal, that it was "pulling the trailer because of the gay content" as an example of the potential homophobia the movie faced. Universal convinced the chain not to pull the trailer, according to Eichner.

Universal representatives did not immediately respond to Insider's request for confirmation and comment.

"Everyone who ISN'T a homophobic weirdo should go see BROS tonight!," Eichner said in another tweet. "You will have a blast! And it *is* special and uniquely powerful to see this particular story on a big screen, esp for queer folks who don't get this opportunity often."

The movie's top 10 markets were all in New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Those who turned out for the movie seemed to enjoy it. "Bros" did receive an A grade from CinemaScore, which surveys audiences on a movie's opening night, and a 92% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. It also has a 91% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes.

"Eichner is among the best at firing off zippy, acidic one-liners, and Bros never lets scenes get too heady or polemical without slipping in a few funny asides," wrote David Sims for The Atlantic. "That balance, and Eichner's generally hyperactive onscreen style, keeps the momentum going."

But comedy, once a popular genre at the box office, has underperformed in theaters in recent years. Other examples include "Easter Sunday," which grossed $5.4 million in its debut and $13 million total earlier this year, and 2019's "Booksmart," which made $7 million in its opening weekend and $25 million during its theatrical run.

One recent outlier is the action-comedy "The Lost City," which grossed $190 million worldwide, including $105 million in the US. But as a comedy with heavy action-adventure elements, it's not a perfect comparison.

The winner of the weekend's box office was "Smile," which earned $22 million and further showed that horror is the one genre that can still thrive in a market otherwise dominated by superhero movies and other franchise tentpoles.

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