Rave Reviews, Movie Awards, and Box Office Bucks: Which Doesn’t Belong?

Dean Keith Simonton

in Great Flicks

Published in print January 2011 | ISBN: 9780199752034
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199894857 | DOI:
Rave Reviews, Movie Awards, and Box Office Bucks: Which Doesn’t Belong?

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What is the relation between film as art and film as business? This question is addressed by examining the relations among production budget, box office performance, critical acclaim, and movie awards. These empirical studies show how blockbuster movies can be readily distinguished from films that receive critical acclaim and movie awards. This separation leads to a discussion of why box office success has such a minimal correspondence with artistic merit. In particular, box office earnings largely involve non-artistic factors that come into play during distribution, promotion, and exhibition. Examples include the impact of major distributors, seasonal markets, wide release, current competition, and word of mouth (or click of mouse). Film as business is thus far more capricious than film as art.

Keywords: box office success; movie awards; critical acclaim; production budget

Chapter.  13428 words. 

Subjects: Social Psychology

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