A Hayden Christensen Flop Is Leaping Ahead On Streaming

Hayden Christensen starred in Jumper, which was a box office flop, and has found new life on streaming.

By Chad Langen | Published

Back in 2008, the Doug Liman-directed action flick Jumper, which stars Hayden Christensen, was released in theaters worldwide, and the movie wrapped up its big screen run with less than stellar numbers in terms of box office earnings. According to FlixPatrol, a website that tracks all film and television titles climbing the charts on various streaming platforms in 127 countries globally, the picture has jumped to the 9th spot on HBO Max’s Top 10 movies in the United States. In the number one spot on the same chart is DC League of Super-Pets, which features the voices of megastar Dwayne Johnson and comedian Kevin Hart.

Jumper features an impressive ensemble of talent including Hayden Christensen (Takers), Rachel Bilson (The O.C.), Samuel L. Jackon (Marvel’s The Avengers), Michael Rooker (Guardians of the Galaxy), Diane Lane (Man of Steel), and Jamie Bell (Fantastic Four). The story centers on David Rice (Christensen), who discovers he is able to teleport at the age of five, and he uses his ability to run away from home, beaming himself to the most fascinating locations around the globe. Unfortunately, he finds himself hunted by Roland Cox (Jackson), the leader of a group of religious fanatics called Paladins, hell-bent on wiping out Jumpers from the face of the planet as they find their superhuman-like abilities to be blasphemous.

In November 2005, The Bourne Identity director Doug Liman was tapped to helm Jumper, and Jim Uhls was hired to rewrite the script previously written by renowned screenwriter David S. Goyer, who had a hand in Hulu’s reimagining of Hellraiser. Prior to shooting, Liman desired another rewrite of the script, and Simon Kinberg was brought aboard to aid in completing the screenplay. The production issues didn’t stop there, however, as some last-minute casting changes saw Hayden Christensen replace Tom Sturridge as David Rice and Rachel Bilson take over the character Of Millie, a role that would originally have been filled by Teresa Palmer.

hayden christensen jumper

Jumper strayed quite a bit from the source material, which is likely the reason critical reception was so negative. From 172 reviews on the review-aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a measly 15% rotten rating from critics, with several blasting the hollow story and the performances by the actors, particularly Hayden Christensen. Although the audience rating is a bit better with a 44% rotten score from over 250,000 ratings, it’s certainly nothing to brag about.

Released in theaters on February 13th, 2008, by Twentieth Century Fox, Jumper earned a modest $27 million during its opening weekend. In the United States, the Hayden Christen-led action feature finished its theatrical run with $80 million, with a global haul of just over $225 million. Although those numbers look impressive on paper, the movie came with an $85 million budget which is why it’s considered a flop.

Twentieth Century Fox originally intended for Jumper to be the start of a trilogy, with Hayden Christensen set to return for multiple movies. Unfortunately, because the film performed so poorly at the box office, future sequels were scrapped. Considering 14 years have passed since the film was released and the fact that Twentieth Century Fox is now under the Disney banner, a sequel is highly unlikely at this point.

Fortunately, the careers of the key actors in Jumper weren’t entirely halted by the film’s lackluster box office performance, with stars Hayden Christensen, Rachel Bilson, Samuel L. Jackson, Michael Rooker, Jamie Bell, and even Kristen Stewart, who had a very minor role in the movie, all getting steady work since the flick’s release. Truthfully, Christensen, who headlined the feature, has arguably had the less fruitful career of the bunch. You could almost count on two hands the number of projects he’s appeared in since 2008.

Hayden Christensen recently appeared in the Disney Plus series Obi-Wan Kenobi, a role he reprises from multiple Star Wars movies. He’s also set to appear as the character in the streamer’s television miniseries Ahsoka, which is set to debut in 2023. With two recent Star Wars projects under his belt, and HBO Max bringing renewed attention to Jumper, Christensen looks to be on the comeback, and we are definitely here for it as he’s a decent actor who just happens to occasionally choose lousy projects.