Uncertainty in the Movie Industry: Does Star Power Reduce the Terror of the Box Office?
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 2000 motion pictures. We discover that 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: revenues diverge over all scales. The studio model of risk management lacks a foundation in theory or evidence, and revenue forecasts have zero precision. Movies are complex products and the cascade of information among film-goers during the course of a film's run can evolve along so many paths that it is impossible to attribute the success of a movie to individual causal factors. The audience makes a movie a hit and no amount of “star power” or marketing can alter that. The real star is the movie. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Volume (Year): 23 (1999)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
|Contact details of provider:|| Web page: http://www.springer.com|
Web page: http://www.culturaleconomics.org/
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:||Web: http://www.springer.com/economics/journal/10824/PS2|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Kenney, Roy W & Klein, Benjamin, 1983. "The Economics of Block Booking," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(3), pages 497-540, October.
- Darlene Chisholm, 1996. "Continuous Degrees of Residual Claimancy: Some Contractual Evidence," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 3(11), pages 739-741.
- De Vany, A., 1997. "Complexity in the Movies," Papers 97-98-06, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
- Blumenthal, Marsha A, 1988. "Auctions with Constrained Information: Blind Bidding for Motion Pictures," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 70(2), pages 191-198, May.
- De Vany, Arthur & Walls, W David, 1996. "Bose-Einstein Dynamics and Adaptive Contracting in the Motion Picture Industry," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(439), pages 1493-1514, November.
- W. David Walls, 1998. "Product survival at the cinema: evidence from Hong Kong," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(4), pages 215-219.
- Ijiri, Yuji & Simon, Herbert A, 1971. "Effects of Mergers and Acquisitions on Business Firm Concentration," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 79(2), pages 314-322, March-Apr.
- De Vany, Arthur S & Walls, W David, 1997. "The Market for Motion Pictures: Rank, Revenue, and Survival," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 35(4), pages 783-797, October.
- Benoit Mandelbrot, 2015.
"The Variation of Certain Speculative Prices,"
World Scientific Book Chapters,in: THE WORLD SCIENTIFIC HANDBOOK OF FUTURES MARKETS, chapter 3, pages 39-78
World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
- Benoit Mandelbrot, 1963. "The Variation of Certain Speculative Prices," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36, pages 394-394.
- Chung, Kee H & Cox, Raymond A K, 1994. "A Stochastic Model of Superstardom: An Application of the Yule Distribution," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 76(4), pages 771-775, November.
- Eugene F. Fama, 1963. "Mandelbrot and the Stable Paretian Hypothesis," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36, pages 420-420.
- Steven Albert, 1998. "Movie Stars and the Distribution of Financially Successful Films in the Motion Picture Industry," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 22(4), pages 249-270, December.
- W. David Walls, 1997. "Increasing returns to information: evidence from the Hong Kong movie market," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 4(5), pages 287-290. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:jculte:v:23:y:1999:i:4:p:285-318. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla)or (Rebekah McClure)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.