Today's blog was inspired by Patrick Goldstein's "Is This a Box-Office Record with an *?" article in the Los Angeles Times this morning.
Mr. Goldstein, I agree that the system for ranking he All-time Box Office champs is flawed. The one we have can go on -- it has my permission, but it would be really pleasant to have the 'other' ranking.
But the ranking should not be based simply on attendance.
Here is the problem with that. Attendance based on the 'kind of release' -- re-release, released to the dollar-a-ticket movie theaters, re-mix, director's cut -- All of these releases that some movies go through actually have different dollar amounts associated with the ticket value based on when they were released and to what chains.
If it were possible, what would be best is to include the inflation amounts over time -- spending a dollar to see a movie in 1930 (if you could spend that much, back then for a ticket) supposedly would be equivalent to spending 20 to 30 dollars today to see the same movie.
So, ideally the list would come up with its ticket value, overseas and domestic, based on something like this:
attendance * ticket_value(depending on release-type) * percentage_based_on_inflation( based on year) = real money spent (compared to current year)
attendance * (ticket_value * inflation) = box_office
A * (TI) = BO
I'd LOVE to see that list.