Comedian Billy Eichner is continuing to advocate for his new rom-com, “Bros,” after its meager box office showing this weekend and has vowed to keep tweeting about the film to spite haters.
The “Billy on the Street” alum, who co-wrote and stars in the historic Universal Pictures comedy, has campaigned relentlessly for the positively reviewed film. And he didn’t let up, even after it underperformed in North American markets during its opening weekend, debuting far lower than the studio estimated. The Nicholas Stoller-directed and Judd Apatow-produced movie, which cost about $22 million to make, landed in fourth place this weekend with $4.8 million, about half of its projected tracking, according to Variety.
“Box office, as we all know, has absolutely nothing to do with the quality of a movie. And tweeting about a movie you haven’t actually seen is meaningless. That’s just twitter b—. The majority of people who see Bros really love it! Go check it out and see for yourself!” he tweeted Monday.
“And yes I’m going to continue tweeting about Bros every day for the next year just to spite you! GO BROS!!! I LOVE THIS MOVIE!!#BrosMovie,” he added.
Prior to that, the “Lion King” and “Bob’s Burgers” voice actor had been retweeting the love that the movie was getting on social media and backing attempts to launch a #GoSeeBros hashtag and trending challenge to raise the movie’s profile. The movie is the first romantic comedy about gay men produced by a major studio, and, as Eichner has previously noted, he is the first openly gay man to ever write and star in his own studio film.
But Eichner believes his project was met with homophobic resistance by some moviegoers — and there are anecdotes that prove it — while others rebutted an earlier thread of his in which he blamed “straight people, especially in certain parts of the country, [who] just didn’t show up for Bros.” User @Yeticast tweeted that Eichner is not “entitled to peoples hard earned money or time” and that “doesn’t make them homophobic.”
Others cited Eichner’s own prerelease tweets about who should see the movie, with many sharing a user-generated IMDb.com trivia blurb that alleges Eichner “has expressed that he does not want conservatives, especially those that voted for the 45th President of the United States and their associates, to see the film, even conservatives who identify as being part as the LGBTQ+ community as he views them as traitors.”
On Sunday, the 44-year-old tweeted that he slipped into a sold-out L.A. theater playing “Bros” over the weekend and was pleased with the audience’s response.
“The audience howled with laughter start to finish, burst into applause at the end, and some were wiping away tears as they walked out. … Really. I am VERY proud of this movie,” Eichner tweeted.
It was in that same Twitter thread that he speculated about the movie’s disappointing performances in certain demographics.
“Even with glowing reviews, great Rotten Tomatoes scores, an A CinemaScore etc, straight people, especially in certain parts of the country, just didn’t show up for Bros. And that’s disappointing but it is what it is,” Eichner wrote.
He concluded the thread with “Everyone who ISN’T a homophobic weirdo should go see BROS tonight! You will have a blast! And it *is* special and uniquely powerful to see this particular story on a big screen, esp for queer folks who don’t get this opportunity often. I love this movie so much. GO BROS!!!”
Since then, Eichner has also celebrated some of those glowing reviews the film has received. Vogue called the film “the best rom-com of the year,” and Rolling Stone has already perched it on its list of the best comedies of the 21st century.
The comedy also got Twitter endorsements from singer Mariah Carey, actor Mandy Patinkin and directors James Gunn and Edgar Wright, who encouraged audiences to see it too.