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(BoxOfficeMojo)   Avatar is the new leader in all time box office, but that's a cheap measure. Here's the real list: top movies all time in tickets sold   (boxofficemojo.com) divider line 138
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13581 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 26 Jan 2010 at 1:20 PM (5 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2010-01-26 02:00:57 PM  
F42: DamnYankees: Also, lets keep this in mind - James Cameron completely made Avatar up.

It's not sequel.
It's not based on a book.
It's not based on a comic.
It's not a remake.
It's not based on a real life event.

In other words, this movie had zero built in audience. It had no one who was "already" a fan of the story. Look at that list - how many movies can make that claim?

I've been a fan of Ferngully for a long long time, you mook.

If you think Avatar, or Star Wars for that matter, had even one tiny spec of originality: You're an ignorant philistine.


I've been aware of Dances With Wolves for a long time, too.

At least Star Wars stole from Japanese cinema, and wasn't so blatant about it.

/Really pissed off about "unobtanium"
 
2010-01-26 02:07:17 PM  
Why didn't anyone point out Blazing Saddles is in the top 50? You all fail.
 
2010-01-26 02:21:41 PM  
kmp1331: Guess you haven't seen Pocahontas Battle For Terra. Old story, new name, fairly boring movie imo.

Fixed.
 
2010-01-26 02:23:57 PM  
DamnYankees: But that's only domestic. You'd need to triple Avatar's numbers to include its foreign take, something you can't say about most movies on that list.

Umm, Gone with the Wind made more in foreign markets then it did domestic.

Its long, yes, but its one of those movies that can be enjoyed by both men (a war story with some pretty good looking women) and women (an epic love story).
 
2010-01-26 02:25:54 PM  
DamnYankees: Gamer Grrrl: The fact that Avatar is even on that list is amazing. It's been out for what, 6 weeks? And it's got more ticket sales than Ghostbusters, The Dark Knight, Spider-Man, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Bambi (which has also been released in theaters several times, and was initially released in 1942, 70 farking years ago).

Also, lets keep this in mind - James Cameron completely made Avatar up.

It's not sequel.
It's not based on a book.
It's not based on a comic.
It's not a remake.
It's not based on a real life event.

In other words, this movie had zero built in audience. It had no one who was "already" a fan of the story. Look at that list - how many movies can make that claim?

Star Wars
Raiders of the Lost Ark
ET
Avatar
ID4

There are a few others. But keep in mind how rare it is. It's quite an achievement.


No but Cameron himself is well-established. There are a hell of a lot of people that went to see it because of who he is. It is sort of like how people avoid Uwe Boll or Michael Bay movies. Just by seeing that, you can pretty much tell the quality or type of film. Cameron has a good track record. If this movie however was not done by Cameron and did not have the budget and technology to support a 3D IMAX experience, the movie would have done much, much, much worse than it did. Had the original Star Wars trilogy, Terminator, or Aliens been done today exactly like they were but with face lifts utilizing this technology, they would have absolutely blown Avatar out of the water.

The ONLY reason why Avatar was as successful as it is can be attributed to the 3D IMAX and CG.
 
2010-01-26 02:27:39 PM  
the money is in the banana stand: The ONLY reason why Avatar was as successful as it is can be attributed to the 3D IMAX and CG.

That's a weird thing to say. It's like saying the only reason The Wizard of Oz was as successful as it was was all the colors.

Yeah. So?
 
2010-01-26 02:27:43 PM  
NanoJack: In other words, this movie had zero built in audience. It had no one who was "already" a fan of the story. Look at that list - how many movies can make that claim?

I've been a fan of Ferngully for a long long time, you mook.

If you think Avatar, or Star Wars for that matter, had even one tiny spec of originality: You're an ignorant philistine.

I've been aware of Dances With Wolves for a long time, too.


Nobody saw Avatar because they were huge fans of Ferngully, Pocahontas, or Dances With Wolves. DamnYankees' point is that Avatar, the biggest grossing movie ever, didn't have a built-in fanbase. Unlike GWTW, which was an eagerly anticipated movie, nobody was champing at the bit waiting for Avatar.

In fact, if you saw earlier threads, most of us complained that the trailer looked AWFUL. The story was incomprehensible from the trailer, the CGI was laughable, and Sam Worthington's only claim to fame at the time was Terminator: Salvation, rumors about reshoots and how stupidly expensive it was abounded. Everyone thought it would suck. And even after that uphill climb, it's done close to $2 BILLION in just 6 weeks.
 
2010-01-26 02:29:49 PM  
garandman1a: DamnYankees: But that's only domestic. You'd need to triple Avatar's numbers to include its foreign take, something you can't say about most movies on that list.

Umm, Gone with the Wind made more in foreign markets then it did domestic.

Its long, yes, but its one of those movies that can be enjoyed by both men (a war story with some pretty good looking women) and women (an epic love story).


So clock GWTW at around 410mill and Avatar at around 230mil. To adjust the metric, GWTW was priced the same as every other movie of the day, whereas Avatar is 2x the price of the 2009 ticket value the site lists (roughly $15 versus their $7.35), does that mean it has the equivalent popularity of 460mil?

Is there a perfect metric? No, but it's fun to try and come up with an equation that attempts to account for all the variables.
 
2010-01-26 02:31:17 PM  
DamnYankees: the money is in the banana stand: The ONLY reason why Avatar was as successful as it is can be attributed to the 3D IMAX and CG.

That's a weird thing to say. It's like saying the only reason The Wizard of Oz was as successful as it was was all the colors.

Yeah. So?


Because there is a lot more to a good movie than a spectacle. Wizard of Oz also wasn't successful because of the colors. Avatar really isn't a movie but a CG display. I thought Avatar was freaking terrible. I would never see it again. Looking at the 3D IMAX was awesome, but I would have preferred many a different movie been made using it. Just because it is "new" made it an attraction. Many of the other movies on that list despite their age are STILL incredible movies. Avatar however in 20 or so years won't age so well.
 
2010-01-26 02:32:26 PM  
the money is in the banana stand: Because there is a lot more to a good movie than a spectacle. Wizard of Oz also wasn't successful because of the colors. Avatar really isn't a movie but a CG display. I thought Avatar was freaking terrible. I would never see it again. Looking at the 3D IMAX was awesome, but I would have preferred many a different movie been made using it. Just because it is "new" made it an attraction. Many of the other movies on that list despite their age are STILL incredible movies. Avatar however in 20 or so years won't age so well.

That's nice.
 
2010-01-26 02:35:37 PM  
I've never seen Gone with the Wind. Is it worth it? (Just because the masses flock to something does not mean it is good i.e. titanic.)
 
2010-01-26 02:39:04 PM  
brigid_fitch: Nobody saw Avatar because they were huge fans of Ferngully, Pocahontas, or Dances With Wolves. DamnYankees' point is that Avatar, the biggest grossing movie ever, didn't have a built-in fanbase. Unlike GWTW, which was an eagerly anticipated movie, nobody was champing at the bit waiting for Avatar.

In fact, if you saw earlier threads, most of us complained that the trailer looked AWFUL. The story was incomprehensible from the trailer, the CGI was laughable, and Sam Worthington's only claim to fame at the time was Terminator: Salvation, rumors about reshoots and how stupidly expensive it was abounded. Everyone thought it would suck. And even after that uphill climb, it's done close to $2 BILLION in just 6 weeks.


ok that's just totally wrong. As mentionned just a little further up Cameron's own record played the role that any famous source material might have for creating a fanbase for the movie. Avatar had been buzzed about, hyped and anticipated for like a wjhole freaking DECADE. The slagging of Avatar before the release was done just by minority of internet geeks like us farkers and some snobby critics who saw a tiny sneak peak but but decided that talking out of their ass about it and possibly being proved wrong later was better for their ego and career than being scooped by the next critic.
 
2010-01-26 02:40:38 PM  
IdBeCrazyIf: Cameron is talented yes, but he's no got damn Cecil B Demille

Cecil was a hack. There, I said it.

And the reason GWTW grossed so much and sold so many tickets was that it was released every five years (or so) from 1939 until 1995. You can blame video for the end of its theatrical run.

Among the many good things I can say about Avatar: it's better than Titanic.
 
2010-01-26 02:42:25 PM  
NanoJack: F42: DamnYankees: Also, lets keep this in mind - James Cameron completely made Avatar up.

It's not sequel.
It's not based on a book.
It's not based on a comic.
It's not a remake.
It's not based on a real life event.

In other words, this movie had zero built in audience. It had no one who was "already" a fan of the story. Look at that list - how many movies can make that claim?

I've been a fan of Ferngully for a long long time, you mook.

If you think Avatar, or Star Wars for that matter, had even one tiny spec of originality: You're an ignorant philistine.

I've been aware of Dances With Wolves for a long time, too.

At least Star Wars stole from Japanese cinema, and wasn't so blatant about it.

/Really pissed off about "unobtanium"


my asshole is made of unobtanium.
 
2010-01-26 02:44:17 PM  
brigid_fitch: Unlike GWTW, which was an eagerly anticipated movie, nobody was champing at the bit waiting for Avatar.


Um really? Maybe its because I live in LA, but there were many people out waiting for anything Avatar Related and who did camp out.

As for GWTW, yes its slow and stuff, but times were different back then. "Oh goodness! He said 'Damn!' why was that not censored?"
 
2010-01-26 02:46:37 PM  
BigJT: So clock GWTW at around 410mill and Avatar at around 230mil. To adjust the metric, GWTW was priced the same as every other movie of the day, whereas Avatar is 2x the price of the 2009 ticket value the site lists (roughly $15 versus their $7.35), does that mean it has the equivalent popularity of 460mil?

Still an unfair comparison, as GWTW has been re-released 15 times in 70 years. I think my comparison is fairest:

GWTW made $20M during its initial run. Adjusted for inflation, that would be $309 Million. Avatar passed that number in its 3rd week (Gross on Jan 2, $352,114,898). Even if we go by your logic and say that Avatar's ticket prices are twice as expensive, we'll put Avatar at $278M right now--only a $31M difference and Avatar's only in its 6th week with no sign of slowing down.
 
2010-01-26 02:47:30 PM  
brigid_fitch: Still an unfair comparison, as GWTW has been re-released 15 times in 70 years. I think my comparison is fairest:

GWTW made $20M during its initial run. Adjusted for inflation, that would be $309 Million. Avatar passed that number in its 3rd week (Gross on Jan 2, $352,114,898). Even if we go by your logic and say that Avatar's ticket prices are twice as expensive, we'll put Avatar at $278M right now--only a $31M difference and Avatar's only in its 6th week with no sign of slowing down.


Gotta factor in population size.
 
2010-01-26 02:48:02 PM  
BigJT: To adjust the metric, GWTW was priced the same as every other movie of the day, whereas Avatar is 2x the price of the 2009 ticket value the site lists (roughly $15 versus their $7.35), does that mean it has the equivalent popularity of 460mil?


$15!? Do people really pay that for a movie? I hope you are talking about IMAX.
 
2010-01-26 02:51:39 PM  
Fano: DamnYankees: GAT_00: Yeah, and people get paid more than they used to. You've got a wonky metric for this. Hell, you're defending Avatar like you're getting paid for it.

I don't have any metric for this. I'm just explaining that there is no perfect metric.

There really isn't a perfect metric.


lineout.thestranger.com

Yes. Yes, there is.
 
2010-01-26 02:52:29 PM  
agwood18: I'll admit that Gone With The Wind probably had less competition, too

Gone with the Wind came out in 1939, generally recognized as the greatest year Hollywood ever had.

Not trying to be an apologist for GWTW, as not only is it not my favorite old movie, its not even my favorite from 1939, but geeze, trying to compare the two is completely bizarre. Avatar has higher ticket prices, good and bad, and a much larger audience to target. GWTW had more releases (as was the habit of almost any successful old movie) but one of the reasons it did was because it was a great movie and when they did re-release it, it still made money. Re-releases of Avatar won't be nearly as impressive (if they happen at all) since its not that good a story, special effects will continue to improve, and the DVD rights will take away audiences for re-releases. The only way to see GWTW in the 1930's through probably about the 1970's was in the theater.

/Apples and oranges to a large degree.
//I prefer, greatly, Gone with the Wind, but you don't have to.
///Just enjoy what you enjoy. Fighting for "your" movie as hard as some people here are doing will just cause stress. Relax people.
 
2010-01-26 03:04:23 PM  
fracto73: $15!? Do people really pay that for a movie? I hope you are talking about IMAX.

I saw it at a regular theater in Atlanta showing it in 3D. It was $14. That was a 40% premium over the 2D price.
 
2010-01-26 03:11:06 PM  
#26 all-time is still rather impressive for a film released six weeks ago. I think farkers are finding fewer and fewer ways to justify its success.

/not an Avatard
 
2010-01-26 03:16:26 PM  
fracto73: BigJT: To adjust the metric, GWTW was priced the same as every other movie of the day, whereas Avatar is 2x the price of the 2009 ticket value the site lists (roughly $15 versus their $7.35), does that mean it has the equivalent popularity of 460mil?


$15!? Do people really pay that for a movie? I hope you are talking about IMAX.


Yes, IMAX is $15.

/Regular tickets around here are $10
//Non-IMAX tickets (RealD 3D) are $13
///I paid $13 for IMAX 3D because I had a coupon. :)
 
2010-01-26 03:16:52 PM  
ManRay: fracto73: $15!? Do people really pay that for a movie? I hope you are talking about IMAX.

I saw it at a regular theater in Atlanta showing it in 3D. It was $14. That was a 40% premium over the 2D price.



With a $1 mark up for 3D I paid $5, matinee prices though ($6+$1 for 3D would be full price).
 
2010-01-26 03:29:11 PM  
old_toole: I have seen all of the top 30 movies and just about all the rest on that list, but to this day I STILL have not seen Gone With the Wind all the way through.
By God this year I'm going to do it.

/Off to netflix


Great movie, worth the watch, but can be a bit tedious.
 
2010-01-26 03:47:36 PM  
DamnYankees: GAT_00: Uh, what? The estimated ticket price is based on how much the tickets cost when the movie came out. What the hell kind of comment was yours?

The estimated ticket price for Gone with the Wind was 5 cents for the matinee, 10 cents for evening. That's 75 cents in todays dollars for matinee and $1.50 for evening.

IOW, Gone with the Wind was much, much cheaper to go than Avatar.


I just want to mention this. I have a graduate degree in Economics and fully understand what you're saying. I think I might be the only one.
 
2010-01-26 03:50:46 PM  
DamnYankees: But it was in theaters for 5 straight years. Literally. I genuinely think these types of discussion are much more interesting for comparing the contexts of these movies than the movies themselves.

In theaters for five years because 1) the multiplex was still decades ahead, and movie palaces showed various movies on rotation for only a few weeks at a time and 2) a good chunk of the film's patronage was temporarily occupied for the last three of those years.

Also, if you do the math, you see that the average ticket price for GWTW was around $0.98, which being generous by using war-inflated 1944 values, in 2008 dollars is around $10. People just went to the movies more often then because they had fewer alternatives tugging at their discretionary income, however a pittance that was in those days.
 
2010-01-26 04:04:54 PM  
AnotherDisillusionedCollegeStudent: DamnYankees: But it was in theaters for 5 straight years. Literally. I genuinely think these types of discussion are much more interesting for comparing the contexts of these movies than the movies themselves.

In theaters for five years because 1) the multiplex was still decades ahead, and movie palaces showed various movies on rotation for only a few weeks at a time and 2) a good chunk of the film's patronage was temporarily occupied for the last three of those years.

Also, if you do the math, you see that the average ticket price for GWTW was around $0.98, which being generous by using war-inflated 1944 values, in 2008 dollars is around $10. People just went to the movies more often then because they had fewer alternatives tugging at their discretionary income, however a pittance that was in those days.


But you weren't bombarded with television commercials encouraging you to go and there was no JAMES CAMERON TRIES TO BEST THE HIGHEST GROSSING MOVIE EVER rhetoric.

Honestly, they need to find a way to adjust ticket sales by the number of screens it was shown on. I guess just report the per screen attendance average
 
2010-01-26 04:08:05 PM  
Gamer Grrrl: So that's an interesting list, but Gone With the Wind, Star Wars, The Exorcist, Snow White, and Fantasia all had multiple theatrical releases. And that's just from my own recollection (my parents saw GWTW a couple years ago, I saw Snow White and Fantasia as a kid, and I saw The Exorcist as an adult, and of course I also watched the special edition of Star Wars). I'm sure others had re-releases as well.

The fact that Avatar is even on that list is amazing. It's been out for what, 6 weeks? And it's got more ticket sales than Ghostbusters, The Dark Knight, Spider-Man, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Bambi (which has also been released in theaters several times, and was initially released in 1942, 70 farking years ago).


I saw a bit on Fareed Zakaria (? I think) about how China was pulling the 2d Avatar from theaters to make room for a state sponsored film about Confucius, played by Chow Yun Fat. The 3d Avatar was still running, just not in anywhere near as many theaters as were playing the 2d version. They showed some footage of Chinese box offices, tallying up tickets, surrounded by official Avatar promo materials, etc.

It got me thinking again about how when Star Wars came out, it was ludicrous to even think about trying to count Chinese ticket sales-- and even that's ignoring that, AFAIK, the state at that time wouldn't have allowed Star Wars to play in Chinese theaters (how many Chinese actually saw it back then is another matter-- black market, etc.).

Here you have a market of 1.3 billion people; a market that didn't even exist 30 years ago, and that's just the most obvious example of markets that have emerged in developing countries in our lifetime. I don't mean to state this unequivocally without consideration for nuance, but that's an advantage that Avatar has-- and all future films always will-- that most of the top blockbusters did not.

And as far as it making all this money in six week goes, another advantage Avatar holds over earlier blockbusters is the now-common practice of simultaneous world release. It hasn't always been that way. European cinemas, for example, used to have to wait six months (or so) after a film's US release before it would get into their theaters. I know at least as recently as 1997-- the last time I was in the UK-- many Hollywood films that were long past their US premieres were just showing up in theaters there. Again, advantage Avatar. It doesn't have to wait; it gets to count all its money now.

(I have to at least suspect that the eruption of digital piracy has something to do with the increasing lean toward simultaneous worldwide release-- if you wait six months to release in China, your audience has most likely already downloaded the movie before you open it there.)

It's unfortunate that Box Office Mojo does not show world stats per ticket, but that's a figure practically impossible to calculate for most of the blockbuster list. In the past 30 years we've seen the emergence of easily-tracked computerized ticket sales; new markets for entertainment in developing countries; and a wider, more synchronized world market overall.

Now, I'm not saying that I completely attribute Avatar's success to changes in the world economic climate. Cameron has assembled an absolutely stunning technical achievement, with a good shot at being the Star Wars for today's young generation. That said, I watched Aliens and The Abyss over the past couple of days, and I cannot fathom what the hell happened to Cameron's handling of plot and character. The only thing I can think is that he was so immersed in all the technology that he never got around to polishing a script that was worthy of all the fuss. Watching The Abyss, particularly the fracturing of the group of SEALS as one of their number starts losing it due to pressure-induced psychosis, I'm asking myself "where was there even close to such a bit of character-driven drama in Avatar?"

I'm not comparing Cameron to Scorcese or frickin' David Lean; I've always thought he was a bit ham-handed character-wise, but at least sometimes you wondered what certain characters might do-- and there wasn't barely a drop of that in Avatar. The couple of times I wondered what someone might do, the answer was "nothing" (i.e. Jealous Scientist guy just isn't jealous anymore in the next scene).

Someone posted a link the other day to a hilarious plothole-by-plothole dissection of Avatar. One of my favorite points was that if that final battle was any example of Navi (or our hero's) combat tactics, the frickin' Ewoks could have wiped the floor with them. After seeing Avatar, I gained a sudden and unexpected respect for those little teddy bears; at least they knew to hide behind trees and set traps.
 
2010-01-26 04:27:35 PM  
Oh, god. Didn't we just do this yesterday?

How many people saw the movie in the theater? That's the only neutral metric.
 
2010-01-26 04:33:48 PM  
100 Watt Walrus: Oh, god. Didn't we just do this yesterday?

How many people saw the movie in the theater? That's the only neutral metric.


No it's not. If we lived in a world without internet piracy or video games or any other substitute, I would think Avatar would have an even higher gross.

If GWTW had to compete with as many options as we currently have, it would have made less.

They can't be compared perfectly! Attendance is one measure, but if not any better than Box Office revenue. Or worse!
 
2010-01-26 04:35:33 PM  
Msol: 100 Watt Walrus: Oh, god. Didn't we just do this yesterday?

How many people saw the movie in the theater? That's the only neutral metric.

No it's not. If we lived in a world without internet piracy or video games or any other substitute, I would think Avatar would have an even higher gross.

If GWTW had to compete with as many options as we currently have, it would have made less.

They can't be compared perfectly! Attendance is one measure, but if not any better than Box Office revenue. Or worse!


Sorry, I should be specific: more people would be seeing Avatar right now, and fewer people would have seen GWTW. That's why you can't compare attendance. A person today is not the same as a person back then.
 
2010-01-26 05:01:54 PM  
Another thing to think about. How many theaters were around in 1939? Did they have multiple multiplexes in every town across America or the World? The opportunity to watch movies now is much easier than back then. Small towns probably didn't have even a single theater, you probably had to go into the city somewhere. Could a screening of GWTW fit the numbers of people in the initial run as Avatar can now?
 
2010-01-26 05:07:54 PM  
Msol: I just want to mention this. I have a graduate degree in Economics and fully understand what you're saying. I think I might be the only one.

no, you are not (degree in econ as well)

/All the above metrics still have not taken into account of ticket prices as a percent of disposable income
 
2010-01-26 05:11:17 PM  
mr lawson: Msol: I just want to mention this. I have a graduate degree in Economics and fully understand what you're saying. I think I might be the only one.

no, you are not (degree in econ as well)

/All the above metrics still have not taken into account of ticket prices as a percent of disposable income


My bad, that sounded a bit douchey of me. I should have said "I hope I'm not the only one." Who understands, I mean.
 
2010-01-26 05:14:17 PM  
Msol: My bad, that sounded a bit douchey of me. I should have said "I hope I'm not the only one." Who understands, I mean.

heh...ya know, we need a non-linear multi-var regression function to solve this pressing problem

/chi-square it just to be sure :-)
 
2010-01-26 05:14:32 PM  
Eh. The technological advances that gave us 3D, CGI, surround sound, etc., are of a piece with the economic and social advances that created mass media, eased distribution of films, built thousands more movie houses, raised the standard of living, etc. Twist the numbers any way you like. All of the movies on that list sold an intense and impressive amount of tickets and mind share in their time. "Who's best" is just a nerd fight.
 
2010-01-26 05:27:57 PM  
Msol: Msol: 100 Watt Walrus: Oh, god. Didn't we just do this yesterday?

How many people saw the movie in the theater? That's the only neutral metric.

No it's not. If we lived in a world without internet piracy or video games or any other substitute, I would think Avatar would have an even higher gross.

If GWTW had to compete with as many options as we currently have, it would have made less.

They can't be compared perfectly! Attendance is one measure, but if not any better than Box Office revenue. Or worse!

Sorry, I should be specific: more people would be seeing Avatar right now, and fewer people would have seen GWTW. That's why you can't compare attendance. A person today is not the same as a person back then.


The fact remains that butts in seats are butts in seats, whereas box office dollars are all over the place. Even for "Avatar," there are at least 4 different ticket prices (matinee, non-matinee, IMAX and 3D), but no matter which ticket you buy, it's still one admission. What drives people to see a movie in the theater versus elsewhere is irrelevant.

X number of people saw Movie Y in the theater. Solid, indisputable, easily comparable number.

The factors that drove those people have nothing to do with counting their admissions.

WHY there were X number of people instead of Z number of people doesn't change the fact that there were X number of people.
 
2010-01-26 05:40:56 PM  
100 Watt Walrus: The fact remains that butts in seats are butts in seats, whereas box office dollars are all over the place. Even for "Avatar," there are at least 4 different ticket prices (matinee, non-matinee, IMAX and 3D), but no matter which ticket you buy, it's still one admission. What drives people to see a movie in the theater versus elsewhere is irrelevant.

We did go over this yesterday, and I can't tell what your problem is. You either have a weak grasp of economics, or a weak grasp of the philosophy of language. I haven't yet figured it out.

/yes, that was unnecessarily mean
//just woke from a nap
 
2010-01-26 05:46:23 PM  
bhcompy: But you weren't bombarded with television commercials encouraging you to go and there was no JAMES CAMERON TRIES TO BEST THE HIGHEST GROSSING MOVIE EVER rhetoric.

Nah, just radio commercials talking about "the greatest triumph ever to grace the silver screen".

Advertising was omnipresent then, too.
 
2010-01-26 05:47:54 PM  
Avatar is the new leader in all time box office, but that's a cheap measure. Here's the real list: top movies all time in tickets sold



the Republican butt hurt continues to reach new highs.

oh, the agony they must feel.
 
2010-01-26 06:05:58 PM  
DamnYankees: 100 Watt Walrus: The fact remains that butts in seats are butts in seats, whereas box office dollars are all over the place. Even for "Avatar," there are at least 4 different ticket prices (matinee, non-matinee, IMAX and 3D), but no matter which ticket you buy, it's still one admission. What drives people to see a movie in the theater versus elsewhere is irrelevant.

We did go over this yesterday, and I can't tell what your problem is. You either have a weak grasp of economics, or a weak grasp of the philosophy of language. I haven't yet figured it out.

/yes, that was unnecessarily mean
//just woke from a nap


It's OK, man. I still love you.

In my view, economics don't enter into it. That speaks to a possible REASON people did or did to see a movie. Whatever their reasons, ticket sales can be counted and compared equally. One admission in 1939 meant one person saw the movie. One admission in 2010 means one person saw the movie. The number of admissions translates directly into the popularity of the movie.

Popularity isn't the only measure of success, but theater admissions is the only measure that is a simple 1 to 1.
 
2010-01-26 06:07:10 PM  
100 Watt Walrus: Whatever their reasons, ticket sales can be counted and compared equally.

To what end? We could also count the number of letter in the title of the movie, but it would be rather pointless.
 
2010-01-26 06:09:19 PM  
Linux_Yes: Avatar is the new leader in all time box office, but that's a cheap measure. Here's the real list: top movies all time in tickets sold



the Republican butt hurt continues to reach new highs.

oh, the agony they must feel.


Completely unrelated to the stupid political crap you are bombarded with the entire movie, the entire story and movie is retarded. The CG is pretty cool especially in an IMAX. The blue people look really stupid. The Na'Vi dialect was very annoying. Unobtanium made laugh just thinking about how awful - yet mildly entertaining The Core was. The story and message of the movie was annoying. Being bombarded with anyone's political views is annoying when it is getting in the way of entertainment and stuff happening in favor of contrived dialogue. No one farking cares what you think. The action is fairly dull in the movie. The environment is amazing. The coolest IMAX 3D parts were the ones with limited to no CG (beginning of the movie, briefing/debriefing room etc. - basically any scene without the Blue People, flying things, or stupid hyena thingies).

You don't have to be a Republican to think the movie itself was shiat, but really really good looking shiat.
 
2010-01-26 06:19:20 PM  
Average Joe here - don't know a thing about Avatar. Not many people in 1939 were unaware of GWTW.

Also, why do Avatar people get their nose out of joint about this? In 10 years I doubt anyone will remember it beyond it's (by then) old-fashion CGI effects.

There are movies that just last. You could pick worse that GWTW as the most lasting of all movies ever made.
 
2010-01-26 06:36:30 PM  
100 Watt Walrus: DamnYankees: 100 Watt Walrus: The fact remains that butts in seats are butts in seats, whereas box office dollars are all over the place. Even for "Avatar," there are at least 4 different ticket prices (matinee, non-matinee, IMAX and 3D), but no matter which ticket you buy, it's still one admission. What drives people to see a movie in the theater versus elsewhere is irrelevant.

We did go over this yesterday, and I can't tell what your problem is. You either have a weak grasp of economics, or a weak grasp of the philosophy of language. I haven't yet figured it out.

/yes, that was unnecessarily mean
//just woke from a nap

It's OK, man. I still love you.

In my view, economics don't enter into it. That speaks to a possible REASON people did or did to see a movie. Whatever their reasons, ticket sales can be counted and compared equally. One admission in 1939 meant one person saw the movie. One admission in 2010 means one person saw the movie. The number of admissions translates directly into the popularity of the movie.

Popularity isn't the only measure of success, but theater admissions is the only measure that is a simple 1 to 1.


Does population matter to you? Would you be willing to at least divide the number of tickets sold by the population? Wouldn't that improve the measure?

This would further increase the popularity of GWTW, I think. I'm just curious if that would be valid for you.
 
2010-01-26 06:36:59 PM  
Why does this matter?

Seriously. Why does this matter?

/doing general relativity right now
//kept thinking of metrics differently
///still hasn't seen Avatar
 
2010-01-26 06:39:48 PM  
Canadian Canuck: Why does this matter?

Seriously. Why does this matter?

/doing general relativity right now
//kept thinking of metrics differently
///still hasn't seen Avatar


I took a class in general relativity. Metric spaces, weee!

However, I can multitask. And this really is a fun little thought experiment. How to compare the uncomparable. Or at least how to do it best.

I was just teaching my students about Nominal and Real GDP yesterday, so it's been kind of on my mind.
 
2010-01-26 06:44:13 PM  
The only way to truly compare is to bring Avatar back in time to 1939, along with all the attendant technology. We locate (or build) two juxtaposed theaters, equivalent in size and amenities, in the exact geographical center of the United States: Lebanon, Kansas.

Both theaters show the competing films in rotation, while theater 1 is showing Avatar, theater 2 is showing GWTW, and vice versa. During the 60 minute gap in running time between the two movies, the Avatar theater will show an edited version of Avatar lasting only one hour and focused mostly on Michelle Rodriguez'ezes character, an adjustment intended to partially equalize the "heaving bosom" factor.

Both movies will be promoted by equivalent groups of barkers, buskers, and newsies selected from the census rolls of each of the 48 states in accordance with population, the selection process audited by the nearly quarter-century old Arthur Andersen accounting company.

Across the street from the two subject theaters will be built a pair of identical control theaters, one showing Star Wars and the other showing Marty Scorcese's underappreciated visual feast Kundun.

At the stroke of noon on 17 January 1940, the gates open.
 
2010-01-26 07:02:20 PM  
Titanic and Gone with the Wind have a lot in common, just replace icebergs with yankees.
 
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