David F. Sandberg and Rachel Zegler are calling out critics of "Shazam! Fury of the Gods" on Twitter.
The New Line Cinema and Warner Bros. superhero sequel debuted in theaters last weekend and grossed a disappointing $30.5 million, falling short of relatively modest expectations for $35 million.
This makes it one of the worst opening-weekend performers for the DC Comics franchise, ahead of only "Wonder Woman 1984" and "The Suicide Squad," both of which came out during the pandemic and were available to stream immediately upon release.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the "Tomatometer" critics score was 53% on Tuesday morning, while the audience score was 87%.
Rachel Zegler — who plays Anthea, youngest daughter of Atlas, in the "Shazam" sequel — responded to the poor box-office performance this weekend by urging people on Twitter to give the film a shot.
"Hey our film is actually really good!" Zegler tweeted Saturday. "but mostly i just absolutely loved making it and the people i met whilst doing so :) go see it! give it a chance. we have an 85% audience score for a reason."
"Some people out there and just being… senselessly mean," she continued. "and it's unnecessary. and i know, i know, 'if you can't handle the heat…' and all that nonsense, and you're right. but our film is actually very good. it's just cool to hate on fun nowadays. that's okay. we're good."
On Monday, director David F. Sandberg similarly lamented the response to the film, tweeting that he had just gotten his "lowest critic score" on Rotten Tomatoes and "highest audience score on the same film."
"I wasn't expecting a repeat of the first movie critically but I was still a little surprised because I think it's a good film. Oh well," the Swedish filmmaker tweeted.
The first "Shazam!" film earned $53.5 million over its opening weekend in 2019.
The "Annabelle: Creation" director concluded his Twitter thread by saying he didn't regret making the "Shazam!" movies "even for a minute," but was looking forward to disconnecting from the stresses of "the superhero discourse online" and returning to the horror genre.
©2023 Los Angeles Times. Visit latimes.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.