Stallone, De Niro: Iconic Actors Losing Commercial Bite

Sylvester Stallone and Robert De Niro are two of the most iconic actors in Hollywood history, starring in 1970s and 1980s boxing pictures “Rocky” to Martin Scorsese’s “Raging Bull,” but this year, the duo have struggled at the box office.

“Grudge Match,” which opened Christmas day and stars the veteran actors, finished in 11th place on Friday at the box office with $2.4 million and is expected to earn just $13 million through Sunday.

Warner-based producer Bill Gerber had hoped that “Grudge Match” will offer a parallel box office success story to the 2008 hit “Grand Torino,” which starred Clint Eastwood and went on to gross $270 million worldwide. But so far, “Grudge Match” has been a swing and a miss financially.

Grudge Match

Made for $40 million, “Grudge Match” still has time to find older audiences but the boxing comedy wraps an otherwise forgettable year for Stallone and De Niro at the box office.

Bullet to the Head

“Bullet to the Head,” Stallone’s recent action film (also distribtued by Warner), was one of the biggest underachievers of 2013, earning just $9.4 million worldwide on a $55 million budget.

Meanwhile, Lionsgate’s “The Big Wedding,” co-starring De Niro and Diane Keaton, only generated $21 million this past year, falling well short of its $35 million budget.

But given their track records, the actors ‘may bounce back in 2014.  Stallone will release another “Expendables” movie in August while De Niro has several projects on the horizon, including a new comedy “The Intern” co-starring Reese Witherspoon.