Off-Topic: No, you're not the only one who hasn't seen "Star Wars" yet. (UPDATED)
2018 MIDTERM ELECTION
Time: D H M S
I finally found time to take my wife and son to see "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" over the weekend. It wasn't perfect, of course, but it was still amazingly good; easily better than the Godawful Prequels, and somewhat better than Return of the Jedi. I'd call it on par with the original (nothing can match Empire Strikes Back, of course).
Anyway, I've seen lamentations from a few people who are under the impression that they're "the only one" who hasn't seen it yet. However, aside from the simple fact that more than one person stating this means, by definition, that they're not the only one, perhaps this will make those folks feel better:
- Box Office Mojo defines "Domestic Film Distribution" as including the United States and Canada.
- There are about 322 million people in the United States, and about 35 million in Canada, or 357 million total.
- According to Box Office Mojo, "The Force Awakens" has grossed over $544.5 million domestically as of Sunday night.
- According to the Hollywood Reporter, the average movie ticket price in North America (which presumably includes Mexico?) is around $8.25.
- That means roughly 66 million tickets have been sold to "The Force Awakens" in just the first 10 days since it was released.
66 million tickets sold in just 10 days is indeed astonishing, and it's obviously shattered/shattering a whole bunch of records.
However, 66 million is still only about 18.5% of the total population of the U.S. + Canada.
In addition, presumably a large portion (perhaps 16 million?) of that 66 million went to the same people watching the film a second or third time. If so, that's around 50 million individuals who have seen it so far...or around 14% of the total population.
Put another way, at $8.25 apiece, and assuming 25% repeat-viewers, the film will still have to gross an astonishing $3.6 billion domestically before every person in the U.S. and Canada has seen it ($3.3 billion for the U.S. by itself).
So, for all those who think that everyone else in the country has seen the new Star Wars movie except them, take some comfort in knowing that you're actually not even close to being alone...for the moment.
In the meantime, I plan on seeing it a second time later this week...
UPDATE 12/29/15: Well, The Force Awakens tacked on another $31 million yesterday, bringing it up to over $571 million in the U.S./Canada. That's over 69 million tickets sold to date.
For comparison, Avatar grossed a total of $760.5 million domestically...but the average ticket price in 2009 was a bit cheaper ($7.50). That's 101.4 million tickets sold...except that it took Avatar 238 days to pull that off, while The Force Awakens has sold 2/3 as many tickets in only 11 days...less than 5% of the time.
However, you have to go back to 1997 for the true king of the box office: Titanic (also from James Cameron, of course) grossed $658.7 million (well, $600 million in it's original release and another $58 million during a 2012 3-D re-release)...at a time when the average ticket price was only $4.60 ($7.96 in 2012). That's 130.4 million tickets + another 7.3 million in 2012, or 137.7 million theatrical ticket sales (actually, the 3-D release was probably a few million fewer, since 3-D tickets generally cost several dollars more; call it 135 million).
In order to break Titanic's record for theatrical tickets sold, Star Wars: The Force Awakens will have to break at least $1.1 billion...which it very well may accomplish, from the looks of it.
And even then, if you subtract 10% for Canadian audiences and about 25% for repeat viewings, you're still only talking about roughly 91 million Americans...or only 28% of the country.
The rest, of course, will presumably watch it on Blu-Ray/iTunes/NetFlix/etc.
UPDATE 1/3/15: According to Box Office Mojo, TFA is up to $740 million as of this evening, or nearly 90 million tickets sold. Assuming 10% Canadian and 25% repeats, that's about 61 million Americans who've seen the film to date, or 19% of the total population so far.
UPDATE 1/6/15: OK, TFA has now broken the $750 million mark, bypassing Avatar to become the biggest domestic box office champion (not adjusted for inflation).
To mark the occasion, I've whipped up a special Star Wars edition of...The Graph!