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Box office forecasting: the new national pastime

September 4, 2008 |  6:46 pm

Cotown_logo2_2 Whenever they break bread with Projector, studio executives and movie producers tend to offer a variation of the same comment: "Good column, dude, but I hate that darn box that goes with it. Why do you have to predict the grosses instead of just letting a movie do what it does and then reporting, you know, the real numbers."

The answer is that theatrical box office is not only a revenue indicator for an important local industry, Hollywood, but, like it or not, a national spectator sport. Putting topspin on the story makes our coverage more interesting. And to paraphrase Projector’s favorite sports radio talk show host, Colin Cowherd, we’re in the interesting business.

Since we keep score on the movie studios, we thought it was only fair to see how Projector and his competitors in the booming, participatory sport of box-office prognostication were performing. For the results from the 18-week summer season, see this week’s Movie Projector column.

--Josh Friedman