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What Was the Biggest Monetary Flop?- Page 2

Yankeefan007
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#26
Posted: 8/20/06 at 4:44pm
best12bars, Sweeney recouped within 19 weeks (it was announced the week of March 19.) The entire capitalization was $3.5 million.

http://www.playbill.com/news/article/98593.html
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best12bars
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#27
Posted: 8/20/06 at 4:47pm
So isn't that one of the fastest recoups in recent history?

3.5 mil isn't "Wicked" costs, but it's still not chicken feed to take only 19 weeks for it to recoup.
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
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TomMonster
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#28
Posted: 8/20/06 at 4:56pm
Not sure about it being the fastest recoup, but one of the reasons it broke even is the nut is so low. Doubling actors and musicians, kept costs low too (although concessions were made with the unions). Premium seats have made a difference on most shows as well.

Margo, I'm sure you can help out here!
"It's not so much do what you like, as it is that you like what you do." SS

"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana." GMarx
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#29
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:04pm
Scarlet Pimpernel might hold the record for Broadway. Between the three versions, I believe it lost over $20 million.
Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.
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best12bars
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#30
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:09pm
TomMonster -- I forgot about the "doubling" fact.

But even straight plays on Broadway (with budgets presumably at or below the revival Sweeney level)... are they recouping in just 19 weeks??

Any of them?
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
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Yankeefan007
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#31
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:11pm
Odd Couple did very well before the show even started rehearsals. So well, in fact, that all of the profits from souvenir sales (hats, shirts, posters) went to BCEFA and Hurricane Katrina charities.
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#32
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:13pm
I know Pillowman recouped, but I'm not sure how long it took.

It also depends on star salaries. In Sweeney, I don't think Michael and Patti took their "normal" pay rate (even though they really don't command Broderick and Lane money!).
"It's not so much do what you like, as it is that you like what you do." SS

"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana." GMarx
MargoChanning
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#33
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:20pm
Remember that the original Sweeney had 27 actors (plus understudies) and 27 musicians, while the revival had a total of 10 actor/musicians (plus understudies) and a weekly nut of around $315,000, making recoupment a fairly fast affair during the months they weren't discounting.

As for fast recoupments, I think either Spelling Bee or Q recouped in 18 weeks as I recall (one was 18 and the other was 24, but I can't remember which was which). And as for plays, recent all star revivals like Odd Couple and Three Days of Rain both recouped more or less before they opened. And History Boys and Faith Healer both recouped in about two months.
"What a story........ everything but the bloodhounds snappin' at her rear end." -- Birdie [http://margochanning.broadwayworld.com/] "The Devil Be Hittin' Me" -- Whitney
colbol2005
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#34
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:27pm
Can somebody explain why Sunset was such a huge flop. It seemed to run for a good long time in London(where I live), and I saw it many times(with all the many controversial leading ladies!!!) and it was always very busy. The Broadway production with Glenn Close is kinda legendary, and regarded as a hit in terms of critical and public acclaim, as well as how it would be perceived by the man on the street.

I realise the set was gargantuan and the leads probably commanded a huge fee, but its not like it closed quietly after a season(certainly in London), or after 30 previews and 4 performances(e.g.)

Why did they keep it running if it was losing so much? Ego?

colbol2005
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#35
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:29pm
ALSO!!!!!!!!! Why did they mount it in the first place if the overheads would be so enormous?
MargoChanning
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#36
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:30pm
Oh and I believe Company, A Little Night Music, Side By Side and the Forum revival with Lane all recouped by they time they closed on Broadway (Into the Woods recouped within a few months of its national tour; the original Sweeney finally recouped from tours and subsidiary sales in 1990).
"What a story........ everything but the bloodhounds snappin' at her rear end." -- Birdie [http://margochanning.broadwayworld.com/] "The Devil Be Hittin' Me" -- Whitney
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#37
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:34pm
According to Sondheim, Night Music and Company did not recoup during the run. Although he tends to think of all of his shows being flops...

I don't know much about the revivals recouping.
"It's not so much do what you like, as it is that you like what you do." SS

"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana." GMarx
Yankeefan007
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#38
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:35pm
One of the things about Sunset Boulevard was the Patti LuPone debacle. I don't know if that factored into the budget, though.
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#39
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:48pm
Sunset was a classic case of bad producing by Webber and his company. Not only did they spare no expense in mounting the show making for an astronomical initial capitalization (that was all but impossible to ever repay), but the weekly running costs were so high that I've heard the show had to be close to a sellout in order to even see a slight profit (I was told that they could only break even if they had 80+% attendance with no discounting whatsoever -- for most shows that figure is in the 60s). Things were fine as long as Close was in it, but went south very fast after she left and the show was hemorraghing money every week as "star" after "star" took over the lead role.

Yes, ego was at play in all of this and Webber and company kept holding out hope that each new leading lady they brought in might turn things around, but things actually kept getting worse. In the end, it nearly bankrupted Webber's Really Useful Company (he had to lay off most of the staff) and while I've never seen an officially confirmed number as far as how much it lost, I've heard that it was well over $10 million.
"What a story........ everything but the bloodhounds snappin' at her rear end." -- Birdie [http://margochanning.broadwayworld.com/] "The Devil Be Hittin' Me" -- Whitney
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#40
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:48pm
Some straight plays are indeed recouping, and doing it quickly. Most recently, Faith Healer recouped in 8 weeks and The History Boys in a little over six weeks. Doubt recouped in 15 weeks. The Pillowman recouped shortly before ending its six month run. Proof and Tale of the Allergist's Wife recouped in 12 weeks.
Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop.
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#41
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:53pm
I had no idea that Broadway was so "in the money" these days.

I guess you CAN thank the jacked ticket prices for that.
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#42
Posted: 8/20/06 at 5:58pm
Premium seats now go for $250+ that certainly has helped! Also, producers filling seats with discounted tickets and student rush. A full house is a full house and it looks good for audiences to see a full theatre whether or not they paid full price. Kinda like the airlines...the person next to you paid how much?
"It's not so much do what you like, as it is that you like what you do." SS

"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana." GMarx
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#43
Posted: 8/20/06 at 6:36pm
Annie Get Your Gun with Bernadette recouped in less than a year.
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#44
Posted: 8/20/06 at 6:45pm
Less than a year isn't so surprising. I would hope that most shows can recoup roughly around 1 year.

But 6 weeks? 8 weeks?

I'll remember that the next time they jack up ticket prices again. I won't be crying very hard for the financial woes of Broadway.
"Jaws is the Citizen Kane of movies."
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colors of fate
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#45
Posted: 8/20/06 at 8:11pm
The Civil War never went to Broadway...it only toured...
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#46
Posted: 8/20/06 at 8:17pm
The Civil War played the St James . We enjoyed it & the music is amazing
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Mattbrain
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#47
Posted: 8/20/06 at 8:17pm
The Civil War went to Broadway. It got nominated for Best Musical.

In My Life was destined to crash and burn the minute Joseph Brooks concocted that...well, I can scarcely call it an idea.

Lord knows how much money Lestat lost.
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#48
Posted: 8/20/06 at 8:20pm
These are guilty pleasures & we loved all 3
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MargoChanning
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#49
Posted: 8/20/06 at 8:21pm
And The Civi War lost its entire $8 million investment on Broadway.
"What a story........ everything but the bloodhounds snappin' at her rear end." -- Birdie [http://margochanning.broadwayworld.com/] "The Devil Be Hittin' Me" -- Whitney
RentBoy86
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re: What Was the Worst Monetary Flop?#50
Posted: 8/20/06 at 8:27pm
The Civil War was a dumb idea anyways. Wasn't it done in a concert style? I don't like that.