Warner Bros. stumbles, hopes to do better at box office

It has been a rough start to 2013 for a movie studio unaccustomed to taking one on the chin. And in this case, there has been more than one haymaker.

Warner Bros. has released five films in a row that have underperformed at the box office, including "Jack the Giant Slayer," a roughly $195-million production that has flopped, tallying $55 million in domestic receipts after three weeks of release.

The film's tepid performance and last weekend's disappointing opening for "The Incredible Burt Wonderstone" mark an unusual rough patch for Warner Bros., which has historically been among the most successful studios. Buoyed by franchises such as "Harry Potter" and "The Dark Knight," the company is typically No. 1 or No. 2 in the annual box-office ranking.

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Jeff Robinov, president of Warner Bros. Pictures Group, told The Times he wished that all of the company's 2013 releases, which also include "Gangster Squad," "Bullet to the Head" and "Beautiful Creatures," had performed better.

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-- Daniel Miller, Los Angeles Times


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