Who director Simon Kinberg blames for 'Dark Phoenix' bombing

Gregory Wakeman
Simon Kinberg on Dark Phoenix's failure

Simon Kinberg has opened up about Dark Phoenix’s underwhelming performance at the box office, insisting that he is the reason to blame for its failure.

“It clearly is a movie that didn’t connect with the audiences that didn’t see it, it clearly didn’t connect enough with audiences that did see it, so that’s on me.”

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“I’m here and I’m saying when a movie doesn’t work, put it on me. I’m the writer/director of the movie, the movie didn’t connect with audiences, that’s on me,” Kinberg told KCRW’s The Business podcast.

However, while Kinberg is willing to take the blame for the film’s inability to impress audiences, he admits that the decision to move the release date to the summer was particularly damaging.

Producer Simon Kinberg arrives at the 74th Annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., January 8, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake

“I always felt that we had a tough date for this particular movie. It wasn’t made as a classic superhero movie, it was made as more of a dramatic, intimate, smaller film.”

“Originally it was going to come out in November, then it was going to come out in February, and those were the dates that I felt like it actually would have felt more appropriate to.”

Delaying Dark Phoenix’s release to the start of June also meant it would be coming out after Avengers: Endgame, which Kinberg believes severely diminished the appetite for Fox’s last ever X-Men movie.

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“And I think also coming out five, six weeks after what may well be the biggest movie or the second biggest movie in the history of cinema, that also happens to be also in the genre of superheroes, was tough for us.”

“I always anticipated that it was going to be tough to be in the tailwinds of that movie. But I wouldn’t blame it on the weekend.”

Dark Phoenix has so far grossed just over £118 million ($148.9 million) worldwide, despite costing £158.81 million ($200 million) to make, and it is set to lose the studio anywhere between £80 - £90 million ($100 - $120 million).