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An "Oscar Box Office Bump" For '12 Years A Slave'?

Box Office
by Sergio
March 5, 2014 6:19 PM
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There’s usually something of a box office bump for a film when it wins the Best Picture Oscar. So, is there any evidence, yet, that this holds true for current Best Picture Oscar winner 12 Years A Slave?

Will its Oscar win translate to more people going to see the film, maybe those who were hesitant to see it initially, or those who've already seen it, who want to see it again? 

So far the results are inconclusive.

On Monday, March 3, after the Oscars, the film dropped some 34% from Sunday. But that’s not surprising. Monday is always the worst day for movie-attendance, and all films dropped at the box office on that day this week. Although 12 Years actually had the lowest drop of the top 20 films currently in release compared. For example,  Non Stop, which dropped 68%, and Son of God, which dropped 78% from the day before.

On Tuesday March 4, 12 Years had an increase in box office of 12% from Monday, but other films had bigger increases, ranging from 20% to 30%.

What this means is that, it’s too early to tell whether the Oscar win will have any real impact on the film's domestic box office, which, right now, is around $50.7 million. We’ll have to wait until the coming weekend's box office numbers to see if the there’s any real impact.

However, the film is still doing excellent business overseas, with almost $90 million at the box office, especially in the U.K., where the film has grossed over $30.3 million; France, where it has done $12.4 million to date; and Spain, where it’s pulled in just under $7 million so far.

Box Office
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  • James | March 6, 2014 10:03 AMReply

    Analyzing something only using percentages without putting all into context is misleading. You can use percentages in a negative or positive fashion, depending upon what you want to communicate. Many folks love to brag about a 100% increase in something or other, but fail to state that the increase was from one of something to two of something. Sure, 100%, but in actual numbers, not a big deal.
    However, when you very blithely state that this film only got an 11% increase while other saw more, you need to look deeper than just numbers. 12 Years has been in the theater for more than 5 months, those others only a few weeks or a lot less time than this film. 12 Years is in 411 theaters, Philomena in more than 1000 and Hustle in more than 900. However, 12 Years only made a couple thousand dollars less than these (171000+ for Philomena and 170+ for Hustle. 12 Years made 169+) The onscreen for 12 Years is greater than either of those. It is making more than Gravity and Wolf. Also, the percentage increases for 12 Years from last Tuesday is more than 125% ($75,000+ to 169,000+).

    So, again, put things into proper perspective and context with real numbers as percentages can be used in a positive or negative, depending upon the goal of the article. The one thing I agree with in this is that no one knows anything else about how it will do.

  • John | March 5, 2014 11:04 PMReply

    Well it just was released on Blu-Ray this Tuesday, so box office might be a bit muted. It will be interesting to know what those sales are like though.

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