Tuesday, January 26, 2010

'Avatar' Sinks 'Titanic' as No. 1 Movie

James Cameron’s "Avatar" has surpassed "Titanic" as the No. 1 all time grossing film worldwide. "Titanic" held the record for over 12 years with a worldwide total of $1.843 billion (via Box Office Mojo).

Yesterday, Monday January 25, "Avatar" hit the $1.843 billion mark, finally passing the director’s other success story about the famous sinking ship. No one can doubt James Cameron ever again when it comes to what he can do with any property and Fox Studios has smiles all around.

While sitting high as the No. 1 worldwide, "Avatar" still has a bit to go in terms of domestic gross with a little under $50 million needed at the U.S. box office until it passes "Titanic," which sits around the $600 million mark.

A big factor in "Avatar's" success is the 3D technology. At least 65 percent of its overseas box office and nearly 80 percent of its domestic earnings derive from 3D venues, which charge several dollars more than conventional 2D tickets. IMAX locations worldwide playing "Avatar" have rolled up $134 million in 38 days at ticket prices at about $15 each.

Although "Avatar" hit it big and has became the “game changer” it was touted to be for the industry’s push into the 3D genre, no other 3D film has hit anywhere close to "Avatar’s" success. In fact, no other 3D film has even gotten close to HALF of what "Avatar" has made.

Then there is the inflation factor. According to a formula developed by the department of U.S. Labor Statistics, "Titanic's" 1997 worldwide gross is worth at least $2.5 billion on an inflation adjusted basis, or $805 million domestic and $1.664 billion foreign.

On Box Office Mojo's all-time domestic gross chart that's adjusted for inflation, "Avatar" is only ranked No. 26 behind other films like "The Lion King," "Jurassic Park," "Jaws" and "Star Wars."

Still champ is "Gone With the Wind," which grossed $400 million worldwide in 1939, now worth at least $6 billion in today's dollars. One dollar in 1939 is the equivalent of $15.43 today.

However, I do believe this proves that "Avatar" is still a phenomenal success.

So far, the film has earned itself a massive fanbase, surprisingly fantastic critical reception and even some major awards including Best Director and Best Drama at the Golden Globes last week. The question going forward, is how well it will do at the Oscars?

As "Avatar" continues to break records, it will soon break the $2 billion mark, something no one ever dreamed was possible for an original flick based on overly-tall blue aliens in the future.

My only fear is seeing films that shouldn’t be in 3D, getting the basic 3D treatment for the sake of allowing for higher ticket prices. With more and more studios pushing for their movies to be in 3D, the 3D effect and experience is quickly becoming something not special and something of an annoyance for the gimmicks employed in a lot of these movies and especially the higher ticket costs which I believe will start deterring some moviegoers.

Since we now know that there are planned sequels, what do you expect of "Avatar 2" in terms of story and box office success? And how do you feel about so many movies becoming 3D?
More news to come! Catch ya' later!
Sources: THR, First Showing, Screen Rant

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