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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Ellie Harrison

Margot Robbie fans defend star as Babylon flops at the box office


Margot Robbie has been defended by fans after the star was seemingly blamed for the new movie Babylon being a flop at the box office.

The new movie from Oscar-winning La La Land director Damien Chazelle chronicles the rise and fall of numerous characters during Hollywood’s transition from silent to sound films in the late 1920s.

It also stars Brad Pitt, Diego Calva, Jean Smart, Jovan Adepo, and Li Jun Li.

Despite the movie having a budget of $80m (£66.2m), it bombed at the US domestic box office this past weekend with a $5.3m (£4.3m) four-day start.

While some have put these figures down to the winter storm sweeping across the US and mixed early reviews, there have been some headlines and posts singling out one of its stars: Robbie.

“Margot Robbie flopped with Amsterdam and now Babylon,” wrote one person on social media, whole another headline read: “Margot Robbie’s latest movie, Babylon, bombs at the box office.”

Fans are not impressed.

“It’s very interesting to see who is taking the fall for Babylon’s box office,” wrote one Twitter user, before adding: “I’ve just seen more than a few ‘Margot Robbie’s new movie bombs...’ when Damien Chazelle and Brad Pitt are Oscar winners with previous bonafide hits.”

“This,” another replied. “So much of the ‘BABYLON BOMBED!’ narrative has been centred around Margot Robbie ‘not being a movie star/a draw’ and yet… Brad Pitt, an Oscar winner who has been in the biz twice as long as her and was first billed, has come out relatively unscathed? Huh?”

Others on social media have been cringing over a message from Robbie played at the start of the film in cinemas, in which she apparently thanks them for seeing it “in a theatre with an energised crowd”. Many have pointed out that they were only one of a handful of people at the screening.

Robbie recently expressed surprise at “getting away” with an “orgy” scene in the new film. Read the full story here.

The Independent’s Clarisse Loughrey gave Babylon five stars in her review, writing: “Tailor-made to divide audiences, this is the La La Land director’s rocket-powered rebuke to claims he’s too sentimental.” Read more here.

Babylon is coming to cinemas in the UK on 20 January 2023.

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