POSEIDON

poseidon_ver2Financed for $160m by Warner Bros and the private equity hedge fund Virtual Studios, Poseidon was the first of two box office flops in 2006 for Virtual/WB, the other being The Good German.  The head of Virtual Studios, Benjamin Waisbren was fired by Stark Investments, the hedge fund backing Virtual, after Poseidon posted an estimated $50m loss for Virtual.  Warner Bros opened Poseidon in the US in 3,555 theaters to little hype after an expensive marketing blitz, where it pulled in a troubling $22,155,410.  Showing terrible legs, the film dropped 58.4% in its second weekend to $9,224,340 and declined 38.7% in its third weekend to $5,650,026 and quietly closed its run with a less than blockbuster $60,674,817.  Warner and Virtual were hoping the film would play well in the overseas market, but it produced mostly soft numbers for a film of this budget, grossing a total of $121m.  The worldwide total was $181m, leaving WB/Virtual with about $99.5m, which would cover their expensive worldwide P&A spend, but leave much of the budget at a loss and posting over $50m of red for each WB and Virtual.