Now The Movie Industry Wants To Blame Halo 3 For Bad Box Office Weekend

from the nice-try dept

The movie industry always wants to blame someone else when something goes wrong with ticket sales -- and it almost always seems technology focused. There is, of course, the ever popular technique of blaming bittorrent, despite the fact that the most popular movies for download do quite well at the box office. A few years ago, we heard that the industry was blaming text messaging, as apparently kids would SMS their friends to let them know that a movie sucked. Again, there was no proof of this -- but the industry insiders insisted it must be true. Over the summer, the industry had little to blame (though, they tried to pin some blame on camcording) since it actually had a record setting summer at the box office. Yet, now that we're into October, there's been a dip and the blame pointing fingers come out quick. What's the problem? Apparently it's Microsoft. You see, Halo 3 recently came out, bringing in more money on opening day than any movie ever. That news seems to have gotten the attention of some movie studio folks who are now grousing that Halo 3 is to blame for poor box office performance this past weekend (found via The Raw Feed). While there appear to be at least a few sane insiders who point out that a much bigger culprit could be the fact that the movies that came out last weekend just weren't very good, others are sticking by their story that movie watchers were staying home to play Halo 3. It's a good thing felony interference of a business model isn't a crime, or the studios would probably be suing Microsoft. Actually, I probably shouldn't give them any ideas...


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Josh, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:10am

    They're not the same thing

    One thing no one seems to note when looking at movies vs video games is that the average movie ticket costs about $10 while the average video game costs over $60 (or around there). So saying that "Video games made over twice what the box offices made this weekend!" doesn't really add up, since less people probably bought a new game than went to the movies. Maybe new movies did just suck this weekend.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    RandomThoughts, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:11am

    Funny thing is, Halo3 was available for free via the Internet before it went on sale.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    henry, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:30am

    i love the game halo 3 box office is just mad cause halo 3 made mor money

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    henry, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:32am

    i love the game halo 3 box office is just mad cause halo 3 made mor money

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    lola, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:35am

    i agree with josh video games go for around 60 bucks movies average 10 if the box office people would do the math they would get a reasonable answer for the amount of money

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    tori, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:37am

    Re:

    they didnt really make more money just do the math

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    random_lurker, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:37am

    Re: They're not the same thing

    Physically, they're not the same thing, but they are both forms of entertainment, so in that sense they do compete with one another (think satellite radio vs. terrestrial radio).

    And what's wrong with "Video games made over twice what the box offices made this weekend?" Halo 3 generated $170 million in its first day whereas the box office brought in $80 million for the weekend. That statement doesn't say anything about how many people bought Halo 3 vs. how many people went to the movies. It's all about the money.

    As an aside, my wife and I both thought the Heartbreak Kid would tank. It looked terrible. A guy who gets married and then starts cheating on his wife while on his honeymoon? How is that funny?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Rob Blatt, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 10:42am

    The best part about it isn't that Halo 3 took their business away. It's (in their minds) that their content isn't compelling enough to get people to hit pause long enough to watch a movie. Perhaps next they can blame any potential summer dips in ticket sales on good weather.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Paul, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:01am

    I think hollywood answered there own question

    maybe now they will make a Halo movie. I think they will make a ton of money when that comes out.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous of Course, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:05am

    Re:

    Good summer weather sometimes increases movie
    ticket sales. The only reason I saw Fast And
    Furious was no air conditioning on a very hot
    and muggy day.

    The theater was dark and icy-cool. I hated
    leaving the plush velvet seat for the sweltering
    sidewalk when the show was over. It exceeded my
    expectations.

    The movie, on the other hand, kinda sucked.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    TheDock22, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:08am

    I agree with the execs

    I bet Halo 3 did cause low ticket sales this weekend because most of the movies that came out were geared toward teen/20s generation.

    That being said, COME OUT WITH BETTER MOVIES! And some not stale popcorn for crying out loud...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:17am

    Re: Re: They're not the same thing

    You miss the point. That means that less people bought Halo 3 than went to the box office:

    Halo 3 at $60(not counting the deluxe $100 editions)
    170,000,000/60 = 2.8 million purchases (not nearly exact I know)

    Movies at $10 a pop
    80,000,000 = 8 million purchases (again not nearly exact, again I know)

    That is why you can't compare box office revenue against video game revenue.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Betaflame, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:23am

    Re: I think hollywood answered there own question

    And it will probably suck.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    Eric the Grey, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:32am

    Perhaps they should blame school

    I mean, school only started up a while ago. I know that is the reason I haven't gone to see any movies lately, simply no time between classes and study, as well as working full time.

    Yea, that's the ticket. They need to blame the schools for lower box-office sales.


    EtG

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
    identicon
    Casper, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:34am

    Re: Re: Re: They're not the same thing

    You miss the point. That means that less people bought Halo 3 than went to the box office

    No, I think you missed the point. Regardless of the number of items shipped or tickets purchased, it was still higher grossing. Period. It doesn't matter if you sell a single copy of a game or movie for $100,000,000... that is still the amount it brought in. Grossing value does not equate to numbers shipped, simply the generated revenue.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
    identicon
    evan, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:38am

    people still pay for movies?

    i just torrent them or watch them on tv-links.co.uk i had no idea that there are people that actually pay for their movies :D

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    Amethyst, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:42am

    Movies

    Maybe if they made better movies, people would actually want to go see them. At this point, I'd rather play WoW than go to the theater because most of the movies suck.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    Greg, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:44am

    Not that I necessarily agree with their grousing about it, but I think maybe the movie industry has a point here - people who went out and bought Halo 3 and played it all weekend probably would have gone to the movies in absence of Halo.

    Not that the lackluster crop of openings this weekend wasn't a much larger factor, but I don't think it's out of line to think that Halo may have kept some people from seeing a movie.

    Video games, Halo included, are just another competitor to Hollywood in the race for people's disposable income and free time. It's about time the movies took notice of that, and if they want to stay in business they have to not only be better than that week's other movies, but better than Halo and whatnot.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    icon
    chris (profile), Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:50am

    say that ugly word: "competition"

    yes games compete with movies. they compete with TV too. welcome to the 21st century.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    Noah Callaway, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:52am

    Hollywood Wakes Up

    So Hollywood finally noticed that they compete with video games?

    This marks a big step forward for them.

    Seriously, anyone in the "industry" who didn't realize this should probably be fired.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    Overcast, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 11:57am

    Yeah, so much good crap came out this weekend.

    Actually, I was doing home improvements with a break to watch a bit of football, an old Charlton Heston movie, and played WoW too, lol

    And even if the movies would have been free, I would have done the exact same thing, oh wait - I did go out Friday night, to get something to eat with my family and dad.

    I asked my Dad if there was anything good out at the movies. We agreed there wasn't. So we went back to his place, chatted a while and watched some stuff on the History channel.

    But as I was talking to the wife a week or so ago - a thought occurred to me about my generation. When I was growing up - we had just regular broadcast TV, cable came a bit later.. But in between, the Atari and other Video Game consoles became popular. They were a kid's DREAM come true of the time... No more MASH, Mork and Mindy, Three's Company, Brady Bunch, Magnum PI!!!! There was SOMETHING else to do.

    Can't say my opinion's changed much. The last 'new' DVD I bought - and spend a good dime for the collector's edition, was made by Cecil B. DeMille - if that says anything about the quality of today's Hollywood vs. 'Yesterday's'.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    joe c, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 12:03pm

    wow i see boxoffice fanboys

    ok halo 3 is for use on 1 console only and yes it does cost at least $60 for there are 2 higher priced versions to choose from. you are comparing ONE game specific and exclusive to ONE console against every damn movie ever released.......big whoopty-do a game beat the box office...why must you make excuses and defend the box office.... regaurdless those are fenominal sales figures for a game and halo 3 is a blockbuster title well worth the money spent. games have gone mainstream and you will likely see this happen again.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased), Oct 16th, 2007 @ 12:07pm

    A suggestion

    The movie industry should just make a Halo movie...then we would all download it from BitTorrent. ; )

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    dazcon5, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 12:09pm

    movies

    ATTENTION movie execs, you are suffering from a severe case of crainial rectalitis. Remove your head and see the reality your movies/TV shows SUCK! On a personal rant, why is it that most of the good shows always get yanked in favor of some mindless crap.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    TheDock22, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 12:28pm

    Or offer something better...

    Maybe the movie theaters could offer companions and incentives to see movies. Like a limited edition WoW item free with every ticket...or a special edition Halo 3 souvenir + discount on Halo 3 with the purchase of two tickets.

    Everyone would win and the entertainment industry would flourish. Now if only the two sects could play nice...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 12:30pm

    Post hoc ergo propter hoc

    yeah....

    because Halo 3 came out, then movie sales dropped, H3 must have caused the tank.

    actually in a way, i believe it's true. companies fight for "first" rights. who sold more, who made more....yada yada yada

    the movies will be here next week, H3 as well (granted H3 will be out longer than a movie at the theater) but remember, movies will come out a 2nd time, on DVD

    i mean, 10 bucks for the movie ticket, 20 bucks for the dvd. humm...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    identicon
    Give me a reason, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 12:31pm

    Youth-anizing Movies

    Its both, They keep targeting more and more towards younger audiences offering just eye candy either of flesh or CGI verity. I think the movie folks are over estimating teenie-boppers and twenty somethings income. Once they've gone out and bought halo 3 and any extras with that there could go there whole entertainment budget for the next month or so.
    Why wouldn't they just stay home and play video games, better CGI. They have an interactive experience rather then a passive one and they're interacting with others playing the game online. Why wouldn't someone with A.D.D (as that seems to be Hollywood's target audience) prefer that to any movie.

    At the same time there leaving more and more of us out when making movies. As its too hard to apply a cookie cutter philosophy and get good films for the rest of us.

    So yes! Hollywood should fear video games as composition. There competing for the money of the exact same audience. Till they start making better movies in general the movie industry will continue to see it profits shrinking. ...Hopefully!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 12:43pm

    Hollywodd idiots

    Yeah like no one would have sat around the house all weekend playing video games if it wasn't for halo 3, give me a friggin break. Millions of people dont have Playstation 1-3, any number of nintendo consoles, 2 choices of xbox and more pc and internet games imaginable, and these people are just figuring out that some people prefer interactive entertainment over passive. I though about going to the movies last weekend and everything looked stupid, so i stayed home and played video games.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    identicon
    Danny, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 1:05pm

    Poor movie industry...

    I just watched Resident Evil: Extinction this passed weekend and I fully see why there may have been more copies of Halo 3 sold that movie tickets sold. Mind you RE:Extinction was on its fourth week but I was literally the only person in the entire room. After that movie I'd rather buy Halo 3 as well (even though I don't own a 360)


    It's a known fact that (for the most part) the only times of year you should go to the movies is during the summer and near the end of the year when people are trying to show off for the Oscars and other awards. Outside of those time spans the movie scene is usually pretty weak and studios have only themselves to blame for that. If they would realease better movies then more people would go see them, plain and simple.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  30.  
    icon
    Killer_Tofu (profile), Oct 16th, 2007 @ 1:28pm

    Halo 3

    Pft, Halo 3 is old news.
    *note, this is coming from a true microsoft hater. I did enjoy playing through it the weekend after it came out with my friend. I enjoy the Halo storyline, and own the book First Strike. But playing the games is extremely rare, and just to relive the story, for me.*

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 1:43pm

    Re: Youth-anizing Movies


    So yes! Hollywood should fear video games as composition. There competing for the money of the exact same audience. Till they start making better movies in general the movie industry will continue to see it profits shrinking. ...Hopefully!


    So next week when we hear of the MPAA (and RIAA) starting a lawsuit against the video game industry over "unfair practices", "anit-trust violations", and something that requires a large sum of cash to compensate for "irreparable damages"...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    identicon
    John, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 2:39pm

    Other comparisons

    Didn't the latest Harry Potter movie suffer lower box-office income because the latest Harry Potter book went on sale around the same time?

    Isn't the real reason that fall movies are so bad is because they have to compete with the new season of TV shows?

    In other words, people don't go to the movies because of anything the movie industry does- it's all those other, outside forces at work.
    Forget what you hear about bad experiences when going to the movies or the poor quality of movies or the TV commercials played before movies. The real reason why movies aren't doing well this fall is because Microsoft released a new video game!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Jason Jones, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 2:54pm

    Blame Halo 3 For Bad Box Office Weekend

    Maybe the Einstein's in Hollywood should get with Bungie, and make a Halo Movie. Hello? Beuhler?....Beuhler?....

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    Hozer, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 2:58pm

    games are overall cheaper

    a game may cost $50 - $60 but it lasts a lot longer than 2hrs
    you pay $10 for a movie and its most likely going to suck and it only lasted 2hrs. even after you beat a game you can still play as much as you want.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 16th, 2007 @ 8:15pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: They're not the same thing

    They are not the same type of entertainment. You would literally be comparing apples to oranges. Sure they are both fruit, but you can't compare them in the same manner.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    fat Tony, Oct 17th, 2007 @ 2:33am

    So what

    So M$ caused you to earn less money...
    So what?
    How is this legitimate news to anyone? I agree that it's apples and oranges. I agree that most likley Halo did impact sales. I agree that the industry should focus on better quality movies as well as making them more readily available and DRM free and so forth. Finally I do agree that the apples are in direct competition to oranges in terms of fruit (entertainment) sales.
    But that still doesn't answer the question...
    So what. If your industy cannot compete with another industry...so what?
    You don't hear Ford complaining about Harley Davidson...or for that matter NIKE about Prada.
    Just because you may be losing business to someone else does not mean they are at fault or you can actually compare to their product quality or market share(I.E. PalmOs and Windows)
    In conclusion...the horse is dead...and it's not a pinata...candy will not come out
    fT

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    Ferin, Oct 17th, 2007 @ 4:47am

    Or maybe...

    The movies just sucked!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Oct 17th, 2007 @ 8:25am

    how about this
    young adult male student take home pay about $6/hour
    ~10 hours to buy Halo3
    ~2 hours to pay for movie
    movie last for ~2 hours a 1 to 1 ratio of slinging burgers
    Halo3 1 game session can be more than 10 hours
    which is worth more?

    Disclaimer I dont like FPS and did not see the movie so the MPAA and MS hates LOL

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Save me a cookie
  • Note: A CRLF will be replaced by a break tag (<br>), all other allowable HTML will remain intact
  • Allowed HTML Tags: <b> <i> <a> <em> <br> <strong> <blockquote> <hr> <tt>
Follow Techdirt
A word from our sponsors...
Essential Reading
Techdirt Reading List
Techdirt Insider Chat
A word from our sponsors...
Recent Stories
A word from our sponsors...

Close

Email This