Saturday, February 22, 2014

Pacific Rim Box-Office Recap

Del Toro, by Gage Skidmode.

- or: The Power of the chinese movie market -


back in May 2012 I wrote a review of the Pacific Rim Script. You might recall, that I wasn't thrilled. Now that I saw the movie I wanted to see how well it dit, box-office-wise.
My prognosis was that the movie might bomb. Well, did it?

Thanks to The-Numbers, we know that the movie earned $100mill domestically, which comes as close to bombing as possible, considering the production budget of nearly $200mill. Add to that another $200mill for Marketing and you have a real desaster. 

But why then, is there talk of "Pacific Rim 2"? Sources like Slashfilm hint at a sequel, being written right now.

We have to look overseas for an answer.

Internationally, Pacific Rim earned $300mill. The foreign box-office, especially in China, which is the strongest growing market for movies, can make or break movies nowadays. In the example of Pacific Rim, approx. a third of the foreign box-office came from China. More precisely, $111mill - according to Box Office Mojo. That is more than the domestic market!

Other movies, for example Iron Man 3 earned $120mill, starting a new trend in Hollywood. Usually, movies had to earn back their budget domestically, with the foreign box-office as a nice bonus. Now, Hollywood has to take the foreign box-office - and especially China - into account, when they green-light movies. 

The dependence might actually stem from another problem. As I analyzed in another blog post, genre movies are getting more expensive. Ten years ago, the cost for an average fantasy movie was around $60mill. Today the median budget is $120mill. This means, to break even, a movie must sell twice the amount of movie tickets. Quite impossible, I think, as the population of the USA hasn't doubled in the last 10 years.

In order to make a profit, Hollywood is dependent on the foreign market. 

And it is this foreign market, Hollywood hopes to cater to with a sequel to Pacific Rim.

See you and have a nice day!

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