The Marvel Studios production house is one of the most profitable in the last decade. That’s all thanks to their very successful franchise, the Marvel Cinematic Universe aka MCU. The MCU era began with the release of Iron Man in 2008 and continues to this day.
However, Marvel Studios is not without flaws. This production house has also made a film that was labeled a failure by critics and even Marvel comics fans themselves.
Why do you think so? Come on, see the reviews below in 7 failed films made by Marvel Studios before the MCU era.
- Fantastic Four: Rise Of The Silver Surfer (2007)
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer is the last film made by Marvel Studios before the start of the Marvel Cinematic Universe with the Iron Man film. This film hooks director Tim Story and returns with the same main character as the prequel film.
Marvel comics fans will know this group of superheroes. Initially this film tried to bring a villain character named Galactus, but failed. This sequel film received a better response than the first film, but it did not make this film a hit in the market. Overall, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer grossed 301.9 million dollars.
- Ghost Rider (2007)
The film stars Nicholas Cage as a biker named Johnny Blaze. Johnny Blaze makes a deal with the demon that turns him into the Spirit of Vengeance. Now, he must fight Blackheart, played by Wes Bentley.
This film received a lot of criticism by critics, the reason being that this film based on ancient mythology was inserted with loose humor and a slow storyline. In terms of revenue, this film is classified as a success and there is an opportunity for a sequel.
However, Nicolas Cage chose to part with the character. Since then, there has been no news that Ghost Rider will be remade or have a new story.
- Fantastic Four (2005)
The first official big screen adaptation of Marvel’s oldest team of heroes. The film features a great cast, including Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Michael Chiklis, and Chris Evans. This film is definitely better than the 1994 Fantastic Four film.
The film became one of 20th Century Fox’s highest grossing films to date, grossing 333.5 million dollars, but it did not receive critical acclaim from critics and fans alike. Even Marvel comic book fans find some of the scenes ridiculous and the villain Doctor Doom seem ordinary.
- Elektra (2005)
The beautiful actress Jennifer Garner is reportedly forced to play in the film Elekra because of the contractual obligations she agreed to since the Daredevil film. This film was shot while Jennifer was on hiatus from her show, Alias.
With an immature production, this film became one of Marvel Studios’ failures of all time. In terms of revenue, Elektra only pocketed revenue of 57 million dollars, and became the Marvel film with the lowest film on the Roten Tomatoes site with a rating of only 11%, only losing to Howard the Duck. Due to the failure of this film, a sequel to Daredevil failed to be produced.
- The Punisher (2004)
This film is an adaptation of the Marvel comic titled The Punisher: Year One. This film tells the story of Frank Castle who turns into a punisher after all his family members are killed. Thomas Jane plays the lead role, while John Travolta plays a villain named Howard Saint.
Revenue-wise, the film was better than its 1989 predecessor, but the reviews weren’t much better. Some critics criticized the film’s premise about revenge.
The Punisher name can be restored through the Netflix series which began airing in 2017.
- Hulk (2003)
The Hulk film directed by Ang Lee was not a commercial failure. At the box office, this film grossed 245.4 million dollars. However, the approach of the characters in this film seems standard, deeper into the psychology and origins of Bruce Banner and the lack of action scenes, making some fans misunderstand.
Since this film was released after X-Men, Spider-Man, and Daredevil, many expected Hulk to be a superhero film with stunning action scenes. Marvel Studios rebooted the Hulk character in the film The Incridible Hulk, played by Edward Norton and then continued by Mark Ruffalo in other MCU films.
- Daredevil (2003)
After the massive success of X-Men and Spider-Man that brought comic book characters to the big screen, 20th Century Fox quickly brought other Marvel comic characters to the big screen. Featuring Ben Affleck as Matt Murdock, a blind lawyer turned Daredevil.
The film also features a stellar cast including Jennifer Garner as Elektra, Michael Clarke Duncan as Kingpin, and Colin Farrell as Bullseye. The film was a financial success, grossing $179.2 million. However, this film received a negative response from film critics because it is very similar to other superhero films and has no distinctive features. Stan Lee called it a failure, saying that Daredevil’s character was made too tragic.
Since the MCU era, Marvel Studios has always managed to collect fantastic revenues. Not infrequently their films become films with the largest income in the year of release.