Billy Eichner took to Twitter over the weekend to share his thoughts on the disappointing reception to his gay rom-com Brothers received in cinemas across the country.
It’s just the world we live in, unfortunately. Even with rave reviews, excellent Rotten Tomatoes scores, an A CinemaScore, and more, straight guys, especially in some parts of the country, just haven’t shown up for Bros. And that’s disappointing, but that’s what it is.
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) October 2, 2022
“Even with rave reviews, excellent scores for Rotten Tomatoes, an A CinemaScore, etc. And it’s disappointing but that’s the way it is.”
Based on the enthusiastic critical response to the Toronto International Film Festival and the sustained social media attention, Universal Pictures expected Brothers — which is the first gay rom-com with a majority LGBTQ cast to be released widely by a major studio — to open between $8 million and $10 million.
But playing in 3,350 locations over the weekend, the film made just $4.8 million, ranking fourth at the box office after the horror flick. Smilethe second week of the thriller don’t worry darlingand the third historical epic week Woman King.
Although Brothers was produced for a relatively modest $22 million, Universal spent an additional $30 million on publicity and promotion, so the film will likely struggle to break even.
Those who saw the comedy over the weekend made it clear they enjoyed it. Eichner tweeted that he was watching “from the back of a sold-out theater play BROS in LA. outgoing.”
Indeed, with a 91% positive rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes, and 92% positive from audiences, Brothers played well in big cities, with its best numbers coming from New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. It fared less well elsewhere, notably in the South.
Eichner alluded to wider acceptance issues, tweeting that at one point a theater chain had “called Universal and said they were pulling the trailer because of the gay content. (Uni convinced them not to do it).”
“It’s just the world we live in, unfortunately,” the star continued, urging her followers to move past their disappointment and have fun.
“Everyone who IS NOT a homophobic weirdo should go see BROS tonight! You’re going to have a blast! And it’s *special* and especially powerful to see this particular story on the big screen, especially for gay people who don’t understand not that opportunity often.”