Sunday, November 10, 2013

Pacific Rim Redefines How Movies Make Money

Pacific Rim was able to become profitable due mostly to foreign box office revenue

In an article about domestic markets vs international markets, Brent DiCrescenzo uses the movie Pacific Rim to illustrate a change in the entertainment industry. The change? America's market is an afterthought and Pacific Rim proved it could be. Read the excerpt below:
Pacific Rim underlined an important message for Hollywood: The American market is an afterthought. The movie grossed $407 million worldwide, and only a quarter of that came from the United States. It's no great mystery why. It was the first big-budget spectacle to depict on film the battle between kaiju and mecha so common in Japanese manga and anime, and it was the vision of a Mexican director, with Black, Japanese, Russian, Chinese, Australian, Spanish and American actors. You know, what people in the world actually look like. It might have been the first blockbuster blatantly titled after its target demographic.

As a Kaiju enthusiasts, it's obviously great to hear how a favorite movie can also change an industry. This also bodes well for the possibility of a sequel. At ComicBook.Com, Scott Johnson writes about a similar sentiment.
Looking at Pacific Rim’s worldwide box office reveals an even better story for the film. Pacific Rim is now in the top ten highest grossing movies worldwide for the year. At $397.4 million, Pacific Rim is also very close to becoming only the tenth movie of the year to cross the $400 million mark at the worldwide box office.

The $400 million worldwide number is a very significant number. Because Pacific Rim cost around $190 million to produce, $400 million worldwide has been the number widely reported that the film needed to do in order to break even.

Now, here’s another interesting, but very important trivia fact about Pacific Rim. Of the nine films ranked ahead of Pacific Rim worldwide, eight of them were either sequels or based on pre-existing books or comic book characters. The Croods was the only brand new intellectual property, and it was an animated film. Pacific Rim was the highest grossing live action movie worldwide based on a brand new intellectual property.

It’s a pretty powerful accomplishment for a film that was branded a failure by many in the media right after it was released. If Pacific Rim doesn’t get a sequel, then Hollywood should probably re-assess whether they even want to continue to do big budget live action movies based on new IP, because it doesn’t get any more successful than Pacific Rim (at least this year so far).
So, financially there seems to be a good argument for Pacific Rim too. Del Toro has announced that a script for Pacific Rim 2 is in the works. You can watch Guillermo del Toro talk about Pacific Rim 2 in our earlier post.

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