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"Uncertainty in the Movies: Does Star Power Reduce the Terror of the Box Office?"

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Author Info

  • De Vany, A.
  • Walls, W.D.

Abstract

Everyone knows that the movie business is risky. But how risky is it? Do strategies exist that reduce risk? We investigate these questions using a sample of over 200 motion pictures. We discover that the movies are very risky indeed. Box-office revenues are asymptotically Pareto-distributed and have infinite variance. The mean is dominated by rare blockbuster movies that are located in the far right tail. There is no typical movie because box-office revenue outcomes do not converge to an average, they diverge over all scales.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by California Irvine - School of Social Sciences in its series Papers with number 98-99-10.

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Length: 59 pages
Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fth:calirv:98-99-10

Contact details of provider:
Postal: UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA IRVINE, SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES, IRVINECALIFORNIA 91717 U.S.A.

Related research

Keywords: CINEMA ; UNCERTAINTY ; CULTURE;

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Cited by:
  1. Darren Filson & Fernando Fabre & Alfredo Nava & Paola Rodriguez, . "At the Movies: Avoiding Head-to-Head Competition on the Big Screen: The Economics of Movie Distribution," Claremont Colleges Working Papers 2000-32, Claremont Colleges.
  2. Ricard Gil & Pablo T. Spiller, 2007. "The Organizational Implications of Creativity: The US Film Industry in Mid-XXth Century," NBER Working Papers 13253, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Steven Albert, 1999. "Movie Stars and the Distribution of Financially Successful Films in the Motion Picture Industry," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 23(4), pages 325-329, November.
  4. Basuroy, Suman & Chatterjee, Subimal, 2008. "Fast and frequent: Investigating box office revenues of motion picture sequels," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 61(7), pages 798-803, July.
  5. Caroline Elliott & Rob Simmons, 2008. "Determinants of UK Box Office Success: The Impact of Quality Signals," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer, vol. 33(2), pages 93-111, September.
  6. Christian Jansen, 2003. "Economic Effects of the New German Copyright Contract Law," Law and Economics 0302003, EconWPA.
  7. repec:pdn:wpaper:38 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Keith Acheson & Christopher J. Maule, 2000. "The Proprietary Rights Initiatives in Canadian Film Distribution Policy," Carleton Economic Papers 00-03, Carleton University, Department of Economics.
  9. Darren Filson, 2003. "Dynamic Common Agency, Vertical Integration, and Investment: The Economics of Movie Distribution," Claremont Colleges Working Papers 2003-07, Claremont Colleges.
  10. Peter Boatwright & Suman Basuroy & Wagner Kamakura, 2007. "Reviewing the reviewers: The impact of individual film critics on box office performance," Quantitative Marketing and Economics, Springer, vol. 5(4), pages 401-425, December.
  11. Christian Jansen, 2003. "Convergence and the Potential Ban on Interactive Product Placement in Germany," Law and Economics 0302002, EconWPA.
  12. C F Elliott & R Simmons, 2007. "Determinants of UK box office success: the impact of quality signals," Working Papers 584026, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.
  13. Yasemin Bozdogan, 2013. "The determinants of box office revenue: a case based study: thirty, low budget, highest ROI films vs. thirty, big budget, highest grossing Hollywood films," Post-Print dumas-00909948, HAL.
  14. Christian Jansen, 2005. "The Performance of German Motion Pictures, Profits and Subsidies: Some Empirical Evidence," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 29(3), pages 191-212, August.
  15. Christian Jansen, 2003. "The Performance of German Motion Pictures, Profits, and," Industrial Organization 0302002, EconWPA.

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