There are times in your life when you just know something isn’t working. It could be a relationship, a job, or maybe even a multi-million-dollar science fiction movie that everyone is desperately hoping will be the next big franchise. That last one was the experience of Mila Kunis when she was working on the box-office bomb Jupiter Ascending.
Starring Channing Tatum and Kunis, Jupiter Ascending was directed and co-produced by the Wachowskis, the geniuses behind The Matrix movies. The action movie saw Jupiter Jones (Kunis) discover she wasn’t a normal cleaning lady but actually galactic royalty, and she finds herself in the middle of a violent family feud. Luckily Caine Wise (Tatum) is there to protect her.
Yeah, it’s a bit convoluted and not very good. While on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Kunis admitted she knew the film wasn’t going to be very good, but it wasn’t because of the incoherent script.
“When did we know [the movie would flop]? Before we started production because our production got slashed in half,” she said. “And so the original budget was twice as much, and you can do a lot more with a lot more money, and oftentimes those types of scripts have a very good storyline but extraordinary other things. Right before pre-production, for a multitude of reasons with studios and other things, the budget got cut, and the movie was different.”
Kunis’s prediction turned out to be right. The film scored a paltry 28% on Rotten Tomatoes, and even with its slashed budget, the thriller movie failed to set the box office alight. It grossed just $183.9 million against a budget of $210 million.