There have been a number of band films/documentaries starring popular bands that have grossed significant returns. They are the films that have earned the love of fans and critics alike. This list won’t be highlighting those films.
Frankly, some of the most interesting films and documentaries to talk about flopped so hard that they are impossible to ignore. Other times, they’re films from iconic bands or artists that land with a big “meh.” This list covers that and more.
One of the films we touch on is Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. This film was famously terrible, and the reviews were brutal.
Variety wrote,”‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ will attract some grown-up flower children of the 1960s who will soon find the Michael Schultz film to be a totally bubblegum and cotton candy melange of garish fantasy and narcissism.” The New York Times wrote, “This isn’t a movie, it’s a business deal set to music.” The Washington Post was actually sort of nice writing, ” … The movie’s fun in a wholesome, innocent kind of way, and there are worse fates than having to look at Peter Frampton for two hours.”
In a recent appearance on The Bob Lefsetz Podcast, Frampton says he was duped into appearing in the film. He says producer Robert Stigwood told him Paul McCartney was going to be in the film. Hearing that, Frampton said he was in. Unfortunately, once he arrived in Los Angeles for the first meeting about the film, he learned McCartney wasn’t on board.
Frampton then noted, “I realized from the first day of shooting, ‘Oh, this was a disaster.’ I didn’t walk because I would have been sued to high hell, but we all hated being in that movie.”
Without furth ado, here are seven band films that (in)famously flopped.