Fool's Gold

Woe be unto the Pirates of the Caribbean, whose swashbucklers only managed to pull in $142.1 million over the past four days. While the third installment of the Disney franchise did set a Memorial Day record, over three days it earned less than last summer’s Dead Man’s Chest and brought in less than Spider-Man 3. Only in Hollywood can making well over $100 million in a weekend be seen as a failure.

Pirates has already made $401 million worldwide, which makes it exceedingly hard to swallow studio complaints that piracy is hurting the industry. It makes me want to go out and buy a copy for $2 at a street corner, out of spite.

Of course skewed Hollywood economics are nothing new. What truly bothers me is how the entertainment press has bought into it. Why are box office stories given such huge play? Why am I reading about what how much cash studio bosses are rolling in every week? That is a business story and there is a whole other section for that

I understand that people are interested in what’s No. 1 at the box office (like that’s a good way to choose what film to see), but why is the box office tally the measuring stick? TV ratings measure audience; music charts tally the number of albums sold; bestsellers’ lists track bestsellers. All of these lists are based on audience popularity, which is how movies should be gauged. Why not use ticket sales as the new measure, which would allow year-to-year comparisons that wouldn’t be affected by the ever-inflating ticket prices. Leave the money to the accountants.


  1. I guess the studios think 150 million dollars sounds sexier than X amount of tickets.

  2. At a certain point it's just a matter mathematics. There are enough studio pocket lining suckers out there in the movie going population who don't care about plot and story line. Pirate make go boom. Oooh, clappies.

  3. Of course you're both right and it is all just about the money. Audiences only matter when it comes to how much of it they give up. I forget that sometimes. Silly me.

  4. At least we still have independent films:) That being said, I am totally seeing Knocked Up this weekend.:)