Why Did Madame Web Flop? Emma Roberts Blames “Internet Culture” And Memes

It’s no secret that Sony’s Madame Web flopped at the box office earlier this year, and not only was the movie a commercial disappointment, reviews were generally not kind to the film. Emma Roberts, who played Mary Parker in the film, has now responded to the movie flopping, saying the reception might have been different if it weren’t for “internet culture.”

“I personally really loved Madame Web. I really enjoyed the movie,” she told Variety. “I thought everyone in it was great. The director, S.J. Clarkson, I think did an amazing job. She’s the reason I wanted to do that movie. If it wasn’t for internet culture and everything being made into a joke, I think that the reception would’ve been different. And that’s what bums me out about a lot of stuff, even stuff that I’ve done, is people just make such a joke out of everything now.”

When the first Madame Web trailer dropped in 2023, people quickly poked fun at the film’s tone and dialogue. The internet latched onto one particular line, “He was in the Amazon with my mom.” When the film arrived in February 2024, viewers quickly noticed that this line wasn’t even in the movie.

Roberts went on to say that, with movies, “things work; things don’t work.” She said anyone who thinks they can predict whether or not a movie will succeed is not telling the truth. “Everyone likes to act like they can predict if they’re going to work or they’re not. And the truth is, you can’t,” she said.

Roberts added: “Things do badly, and then they blow up later on TikTok. Things do well, but then you watch them, and you’re like, ‘This did well?’ There is no secret. It’s about doing something goodish and it hitting at the right time. Everything else is like a wish and a prayer. I’m not intimidated by failure, and I’m not intimidated by people having negative thoughts about something.”

Following Madame Web’s release, star Dakota Johnson spoke out against what she called “filmmaking by committee.” She also said she is unlikely to ever make a movie like Madame Web again. Co-star Sydney Sweeney, who plays Spider-Woman in the film, joked on SNL that no one saw Madame Web.

Madame Web has earned more than $100 million worldwide, and that is $83 million less than Paul Blart: Mall Cop earned during its own theatrical run. Madame Web came to Netflix in May and quickly jumped to No. 1 on Netflix’s popularity chart in the US during its first week.

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