Unfortunately, the film disappointed at the box office, grossing just $140 million worldwide, leaving a second instalment looking very unlikely (although there has been some talk that a sequel could still happen due to impressive toy sales).
Speaking to Screen Rant, director Dean Israelite has reflected on the film’s underperformance at the box office, stating that he believes it was harmed by its PG-13 rating.
“Yes, definitely,” said Israelite when asked about the rating. Definitely. And not only do I think it, but there’s been market studies on it, and the findings have been that if the movie were rated PG- I don’t want to go into the specific numbers- but if the movie had been rated PG, there would have been more traffic. I think parents were unsure if they could bring their kids to the movie, which surprised me, because the movie is a tame PG-13.”
“We did a lot of preview screenings, and to me, it felt like a seven-year-old might be scared, but in a good way,” he continued. “They liked that they were scared of Rita, but they still came out of the movie enjoying it, they liked what was going on. I think we really tread that line well, so it was disappointing that parents didn’t know that they could take their kids to it. I’m hoping now, with it coming out on DVD and Blu-ray, and On Demand, that parents will feel more comfortable. That maybe they’ll check it out for themselves and then see that it’s suitable.”
Given that the Power Rangers franchise is typically targeted towards younger children, Israelite could well have a point that the rating impacted its box office haul, although there are plenty of PG-13 movies that enjoy huge success, so perhaps that doesn’t tell the full story.
Why do you think Power Rangers failed at the box office? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below…