Everyone knows that GTA IV is going to be big — even though it might not be big enough to help publisher Take-Two (TTWO) fend off Electronic Arts.
But just how big is it, really? It will likely surpass Halo 3’s (MSFT) one-week total of $300 million in sales. And it may ring up $450 million in sales this year, predicts Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter.
But while video games are supposed to be the new movie business, they’re not there yet — at least not in terms of raw dollars.
Compare GTA IV’s take to the international box office receipts for blockbuster movies. If GTA was a movie, it would be 77th on boxofficemojo.com’s list. Just behind “Ocean’s Eleven” and just ahead of “Pearl Harbor.” And three slots behind “National Treasure: Book Of Secrets” which came out last winter and apparently grossed $456 million, even though we don’t know a living soul who’s seen it.
Most important: After gamers plunk down $60 or so for GTA IV, they’re just about done spending money. But ticket sales are only a portion of a movie’s overall revenue stream, and they’re not the biggest one, either. So when you gaze at the the numbers below, keep in mind that they’re underestimating the films’ overall haul.
1. Titanic (1997) — $1,845.0 (in millions)
2. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) — $1,119.3
3. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006) — $1,066.2
4. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (2001) — $976.5
5. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (200&) — $961.0
6. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007) — $938.5
7. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) — $926.3
8. Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999) — $924.3
9. Shrek 2 (2004) — $919.8
10. Jurassic Park (1993) — $914.7
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