Box Office History: Christmas and New Year’s

10 Dec
christmas tree

christmas tree (Photo credit: peminumkopi)

So far the three weekends that followed Thanksgiving have released a grand total of three movies, an average of one per week. Then the weekend after The Hobbit opens there’s a grand total of eight movies being released the weekend before and during Christmas.

Movies as diverse as the Judd Apatow comedy This is 40, the Quentin Tarantino slavery film Django Unchained,  and the Oscar hopeful Les Miserables will be opening. The fact is that the period between Christmas and New Year’s Day is about ten days and is one of the biggest ten days of the year to see movies.

The reason moviegoing at this time is so huge is that everyone at least gets Christmas Eve and Christmas Day off, and that is the minimum amount of days off people usually get. In fact most people get New Year’s Eve and Day off.

In this span of ten days a movie’s box office gets inflated as if it was getting ten free Fridays.  Christmas, which is the biggest box office day of the year,  is bigger than Independence Day and Memorial Day.

Movie studios began to see the amazing box office potential of Christmas and New Year’s when Titanic opened over Christmas and went on to be the biggest box office hit of all time.  Ever since then we have had movies such as Cast Away, The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Night at the Museum, and Avatar open at Christmas.

In fact the Christmas weekend when Avatar broke the second weekend record is the highest grossing weekend of all time. It’s then followed by the New Year’s weekend where a movie’s box office often increases from the Christmas weekend before it.

In the past two years after seeing how well films can do, movie studios decided the more the merrier, and more films started opening over Christmas to get that ten day bump in box office revenue.

These ten days of box office lead to an embarrassment of riches as there really isn’t a single type of film you can’t see over this period. Whatever type of movie you want to see, Christmas and New Year’s have it.


6 Responses to “Box Office History: Christmas and New Year’s”

  1. moose4188 December 12, 2012 at 3:45 pm #

    I am a box office nerd as well, so this blog is the most informative to me out of them all. In future posts perhaps you can talk about your process for how you predict the grosses for movies. What affects your projections the most. You could also do a post on which movies you felt were overrated based upon grosses and which ones you felt should have done better at the box office because they were great films.

  2. Andrew December 12, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

    Your blog is definitely the most informed one in our class. You really seem to have a lot of expertise in the areas you speak about. You can be a bit technical in your approach, but I actually enjoy that quite a bit. It lends credibility to what you are saying.

    I agree with Moose, I’d like to see you talk about the methods that go into predicting the box office. What happens with box office flops that the industry was banking on being money makers?

  3. blackjackofalltrades December 12, 2012 at 3:53 pm #

    First – I have to say I love the poll idea! I voted 🙂
    It’s really clear throughout your blog that you have an invested interest in movies and genuinely care about how they did in the box office. I think I was looking for more variety.. a hook I suppose. I don’t typically have any interest in how a movie did at the box office. I’d like to see more of which movies you are going to see, your favorites of all time (and how they did at the box office in comparison?)… more personality! My one question is: would you think about doing that in the future if you continued with your blog?

    • Tom Atkinson December 13, 2012 at 3:06 am #

      I think I will continue my blog and I think that I will show more personality even though I feel with my 50 hobbit posts as of late what movie I’m anticipating.

  4. ktibby214 December 12, 2012 at 3:53 pm #

    Every time I read one of your posts, I learn something about the movie industry. I thought that was really cool! It’s enjoyable, obvious that you know what you’re talking about, and nice to expect that I’ll be learning something while reading it every time. Nice work!

  5. jdodd1650 December 12, 2012 at 4:07 pm #

    I am a huge fan of movies and I will surely be seeing a number of films of the holiday break. The information that you provide in your links is very helpful in seeing which movies do well and what movies critics liked the most. As a movie lover I have always dreamed that a director would create “the perfect movie”, one that surpasses all others and one that everyone will enjoy. What is your dream cast for a movie and what would the plot and/or title be? Do you think it would do well against other films in the industry and when would you release it?

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