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Do Movie Budgets Predict Success?

Every studio would love to produce a movie that sells millions of tickets. Does spending a lot to make a movie result in greater ticket sales?

Choose Your Data:

Animated Movies Nominated for the Academy Award 2010–2013**

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Movie Name Cost (in millions) Revenue (in millions)
Brave (2013) 255 554.6
Frankenweenie (2013) 75 81.1
ParaNorman (2013) 83 107.6
The Pirates! Band of Misfits (2013) 87 123.1
Wreck-It Ralph (2013) 230 442.1
Kung Fu Panda 2 (2012) 220 661.7
Puss in Boots (2012) 190 554.8
Rango (2012) 195 244.8
How to Train Your Dragon (2011) 235 494.9
Toy Story 3 (2011) 270 1,064.0
Coraline (2010) 80 121.6
Fantastic Mr. Fox (2010) 62 46.5
The Princess and the Frog (2010) 155 267.4
Up (2010) 245 731.5
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Animated Movie Cost Compared to Revenue 2010-2013**

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Discussion Question:

Based on the line of best fit, how much revenue would you expect from a movie that cost $160 million to make?

Answer

Discussion Question:

Do you think the line of best fit would be a good predictor of the revenue a movie that cost $400 million would make?

Answer

SOURCES: Names of Nominees: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, “Nominees for the [82nd–85th] Academy Awards,” oscars.org.
Cost and Revenue Data: BoxOffice, boxoffice.com.
**Data provided for American-made films only.

The data sets used in these examples were obtained from public domain and third-party sources, and are intended for educational purposes only. All facts and figures may become inaccurate, out-of-date, or subject to revision without notice.

Photos: theater seats, © Karramba Production/Shutterstock; tickets, © Maria Dragomer/Shutterstock.