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Posted by on Aug 2, 2007 in Entrepreneurship, Hollywood | 4 comments

Top ten box office champs

1. Titanic (1997) $1,835,300,000
2. The Lord of the Rings: TROTK (2003) $1,129,219,252
3. Pirates of the Caribbean 2:  (2006) $1,060,332,628
4. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001) $968,657,891
5. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007) $951,388,712
6. Star Wars: The Phantom Menace (1999) $922,379,000
7. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) $921,600,000
8. Jurassic Park (1993) $919,700,000
9. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005) $892,194,397
10. Spider-Man 3 (2007) $884,927,292

These figures represent box office receipts only, and do not include DVD sales, television fees, merchandising and other revenue sources. When you add those in, the numbers are obscene. From Variety:

“Titanic” is the top-grossing movie of all time, with a worldwide take of $1.835 billion. But it’s also the second-highest-grossing title in home entertainment, earning around $1.2 billion worldwide from DVD and video sales and rentals. Then add about $55 million — which is what NBC and HBO jointly paid for the TV rights. That comes to $3.089 billion — close enough to be within the margin of error.

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  1. Other movies that weren’t as widely seen but made stupid, crazy money nonetheless (or, at the very least, more than most of us will earn in our lifetimes):
    — Booty Call
    — Earnest Scared Stupid
    — Waterworld
    Work these gems into a conversation and let the mirth begin…and laughter is priceless, no?

  2. Booty and Earnest, yes.

    Waterworld was a colossall failure. $175 Million budget, domestic box office less than $90 million.

    In order for a film to be considered profitable, they have to make at least twice the budget, sometimes three times, due to marketing, prints and advertising.

  3. But, like David Hasselhoff, wasn’t Waterworld a huge hit in Europe?

  4. Not big enough to make them well. From Business Outlook, June 2004:

    “Waterworld (1995) provides a good example of the risks in movie making. At the time of its release, Waterworld was the most expensive movie in Hollywood’s history. Poor planning, unplanned incidents, logistical problems, and crew exhaustion increased the budget of $100 million to about $175 million. Another cost driver was the salary for stars like Kevin Costner who, according the associated press, was paid $12 million and required and ocean-view bungalow with a servant and chef at a cost of $4,500 per night. Media analyst Paul Kegan Associates, Inc., had estimated that just for the studio to break even, the movie should have grossed $265 million at the box office plus another $100 million in video and DVD sales. This revenue would have required Waterworld to be the most successful movie of all time to date. The actual gross of Waterworld sits around $ 255 million (US and foreign markets), making the movie a financial flop. At the other extreme, the movie Titanic topped all previous production costs ($200 million) but generated gross revenue of $1,234 billion making it the most successful movie of all time.”

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