Friday, August 1, 2008

The Nerds Are Running Hollywood

Examine the all-time top grossing films in the U.S. What do you notice?

13 of the current top 20 are either superhero, sci-fi or fantasy-related flicks. With the exception of the animated features and The Passion of the Christ, the most lucrative US films list is also a running list of every nerd's favorite movies. Coincidence?

This article posits that keeping the nerds happy is a surefire way for Hollywood studios to achieve box office gold:
Hollywood always wants to know if it's on the right track. Book adaptations and genre films are attractive propositions because studios know the in-built fan base will see the film and galvanise wider attendance. But the comic-book fans are a savvy crowd and, if Hollywood gets it wrong, poor early word can spread like wildfire. Ever since the cult website Ain't It Cool News damned 1997's Batman & Robin with negative advance reviews, there's been a potency to the musings of netizens. After all, who wants to fork out $250m in production and marketing costs only for a film to end up in the bargain bucket at the local video shop?
This summer is no exception to the rule of nerd domination with The Dark Knight, Iron Man and Indiana Jones rounding out the top three highest-grossing summer blockbusters.

The moral of the story: A movie that satisfies the nerds will most often satisfy the masses. Or maybe there are just a whole lot of nerds out there.

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