All time worldwide box office trends


If you take a look at the listings for the worldwide Box office rankings your pretty quickly notice some interesting things going on. First of all is that the makers of Titanic must have been pretty upset about the lack of sequel opportunity, as Titanic sits right on top of the money making tree. Titanic has a pretty massive margin on the 2nd ranked movie, it really is going to take a truly massive film hit to dethrone it.

Next up is the Lord of the Rings – The Return of the King, the final movie in the trilogy and ranked no 2 in the all time charts. So we can presume people started watching the Fellowship of the Ring, got into it and got hooked, watched the Two Towers, they were all still interested and then put The Return of the King at the top of the money rankings in the trilogy. The 2nd movie The two towers was down at position 8, with the original movie all the way back at 15 in the chart. So here we can see a trilogy building in strength at a consistent level where the 3rd movie put in the strongest show at the box office.

We see a similar trend with the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. The original is all the way down the charts at position 31, but was a really entertaining movie and I expect by DVD sales and word of mouth, most nearly everyone in the western world saw that movie. Which accounts for Dead mans Chest, the 2nd movie in the trilogy getting a rank of 3 in the box office charts, 28 places higher than the original. But Dead Man’s chest, while being enjoyable was not as good as the original and the final movie in the trilogy, At World’s end suffered a bit for this, only ranking at 5. Maybe they lost a few fans after that second movie.

Its interesting to see that the top 10 chart currently is dominated by sequels and franchises, with only Titanic being the single movie, we obviously love a good sequel.

Heres the top 25 from the list, kindly taken from IMDB. You can view the full list here.

1. Titanic (1997) $1,835,300,000
2. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) $1,129,219,252
3. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006) $1,060,332,628
4. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001) $968,657,891
5. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007) $958,404,152
6. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007) $937,000,866
7. Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999) $922,379,000
8. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) $921,600,000
9. Jurassic Park (1993) $919,700,000
10. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005) $892,194,397
11. Spider-Man 3 (2007) $885,430,303
12. Shrek 2 (2004) $880,871,036
13. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002) $866,300,000
14. Finding Nemo (2003) $865,000,000
15. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) $860,700,000
16. Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005) $848,462,555
17. Independence Day (1996) $811,200,000
18. Spider-Man (2002) $806,700,000
19. Star Wars (1977) $797,900,000
20. Shrek the Third (2007) $791,106,665
21. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004) $789,458,727
22. Spider-Man 2 (2004) $783,577,893
23. The Lion King (1994) $783,400,000
24. The Da Vinci Code (2006) $757,236,138
25. E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial (1982) $756,700,000