Forums - Movies Discussion - Tracking The Rise (Or Fall?) of Skywalker

starcraft said:

If I wanted to call people out, I'd have called people out. If you think the politics of Star Wars' fan base haven't been at play on VGC, its unlikely we will agree on anything relating to this topic.

You're making excuses for not providing proof and explanation, weak ones at that. You effectively did call people out, it's not hard to guess who exactly you are referring to. Whether or not there are plenty of fake SW fans on VGC pushing a still unspecified agenda isn't something that can be disagreed upon. If you show me evidence then I'll believe it, but not a moment sooner. If not for me, then do it for anyone who might be reading this thread. Until then your claim remains baseless and, quite frankly, laughable.



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Lonely_Dolphin said:
starcraft said:

If I wanted to call people out, I'd have called people out. If you think the politics of Star Wars' fan base haven't been at play on VGC, its unlikely we will agree on anything relating to this topic.

You're making excuses for not providing proof and explanation, weak ones at that. You effectively did call people out, it's not hard to guess who exactly you are referring to. Whether or not there are plenty of fake SW fans on VGC pushing a still unspecified agenda isn't something that can be disagreed upon. If you show me evidence then I'll believe it, but not a moment sooner. If not for me, then do it for anyone who might be reading this thread. Until then your claim remains baseless and, quite frankly, laughable.

Excellent, then we agree these people exist.



starcraft - Playing Games = FUN, Talking about Games = SERIOUS

starcraft said:
Lonely_Dolphin said:

You're making excuses for not providing proof and explanation, weak ones at that. You effectively did call people out, it's not hard to guess who exactly you are referring to. Whether or not there are plenty of fake SW fans on VGC pushing a still unspecified agenda isn't something that can be disagreed upon. If you show me evidence then I'll believe it, but not a moment sooner. If not for me, then do it for anyone who might be reading this thread. Until then your claim remains baseless and, quite frankly, laughable.

Excellent, then we agree these people exist.

I only said it's easy to figure out who you're talking about, I very clearly did not agree that your slanderous insinuations about said people are fair n accurate.

That you refuse to provide proof and would instead believe I said that which I did not tells me you probably didn't get this idea of SW agenda pushing VGCers from anything real, only your imagination. You like the movies and think they're good, therefore you can't stand the idea that they have objective flaws and people find them bad. You've convinced yourself that anyone who doesn't like the movies must do so for invalid reasons, that they hate because they're sexist/racist/misogynist/etc. When you can't attack their arguments, attack their character.

That is just an assumption about your thought process here, but a fair one. I've given you the chance to show this isn't true, but all you've done is reinforce it.



zorg1000 said:

I'm sorry man, you're great at collecting data and making graphs but the conclusions you make from them arent always accurate. Things like denying that Kinect was the main factor in late 360 sales and this argument are just plain silly.

Your data shows that all movies take a hit after New Years, nobody is denying that that particular week has a big drop so look at the weeks beyond that. Its having bigger WoW drops and losing theaters at a faster pace than most other movies currently in theaters, even when compared to movies that released before it to the point where Jumanji is now ahead of it.

If people wanted to see the movie than they would see it, either in the weeks before New Years week or in the weeks after it.

thismeinteil likes to cherry-pick the recent Jumanji films because their overall trajectories are way outside the norm for a modern blockbuster. They are comedies (with major action-adventure elements, to be fair) from a far less successful series and that have had far smaller debuts and smaller lifetime grosses than any main series Star Wars film (domestically, Jumanji 3 made $404M, and Jumanji 4 is up to $283M). So they've been slower burners relative to their debuts than a lot of other films. So what? How come legs only matter for some films and not others? Who gets to decide, and by what criteria? Either they're a big deal for all films or they're not a big deal for any of them. 

Jumanji: WttJ made a little over $107.5M after its fourth full week, matching or even exceeding most other big blockbusters of the past decade even in absolute adjusted dollar terms, even summer films, despite taking a fairly big drop its first full post-New Year's week (-46.6% from the previous week, by far its largest WoW drop until the week of March 16-22). Compared to recent movies with similar lifetime grosses (~$400M, plus or minus, say, $20M), its post-Week 4 gross is vastly better than nearly all of them. If that was bad for The Last Jedi, then it should be bad for, well, just about any other film that didn't make ≥25% of its lifetime gross after Week 4 (the norm for most major films has been less than 20%, though almost always more than 7%).

Sometimes you get a film like Avatar or the two recent Jumanji films that are less front-loaded than the norm (yet all three still experienced the biggest drops of their first 2-3 months in their first fully post-New Year's week; also, as I've mentioned before they all also had unremarkable debuts). Such deviations from the norm should not be the measuring stick when judging the relative performance of any other film, whether or not it's a Star Wars film. Cherry-picking them in order to argue against TLJ and TROS is a dishonest debate tactic, because like all instances of cherry-picking it selectively looks only at specific data points that claimant thinks makes their case, rather than looking at the broader body of data. Star Wars films should be compared to other major blockbusters that follow more normal trajectories at the box office, i.e., having a large opening and a steady drop afterward (and even then, when comparing week-over-week performances at any given point care ought to be taken to observe the influence of holidays and other calendar effects).

And just for the hell of it, I went ahead and threw together this chart:

And this one where I took each column of data points, aligned them side-by-side, and sorted them from high to low:

It turns out I had nearly half the data points I needed already (still took me well over an hour to gather and sort the rest of the data and create and format the charts). And since the first full post-New Year's week for December films in the data set has been in either Week 3 or Week 4, that's why I have Week 3 & Week 4 data for the non-December films.

To ensure a mostly apples-to-apples comparison with Star Wars, I focused primarily on films that were A) live-action, B) primarily action-adventure films, C) were released in the 2010s or spent most of their initial run in the decade (so Dec. '09 releases would count), and D) were released no earlier than Dec. 11 to ensure that no more than three full weeks of a film's run was in December and in order to compare them more fairly to Weeks 3 & 4 of non-December releases (for reference, TLJ spent the most time in December of any new Star Wars film, at 17 days). I chose the top 10 highest-grossing films each for both December and non-December releases that met those criteria (for the latter I threw in Jumanji 3 since that's been a talking point here for the past two years). As I was finishing I decided to add bonus data points: since half of the summer movies were MCU films I put the next five highest-grossing MCU films, and since Jumanji 3 and the Hobbit movies were included for the December releases I added Jumanji 4 and the LotR trilogy, and, since that added up to only 14 December releases, to bring it up to 15 I added Night at the Museum just to put in a successful movie more similar to Jumanji than the others. I think 30 films, with half being Dec. releases and half being non-Dec. releases, is a decent sample size for purposes of this discussion, but it could be expanded (and would still show similar results).

The data is clear: the post-New Year's drop cannot be denied as a major factor for December releases. The transition out of the December holidays is a rough one for nearly all holdovers from that month, with bigger drops after New Year's than what non-December releases have at the same points in their lives. In the 30 films in that data set, the 15 non-December films had an average drop of 46.1% in Week 3 and 37.9% in Week 4, while for the 15 December releases their average drop in their first full post-New Year's week was 56.3%. That's a significantly larger drop for the December releases, and proves that the days after New Year's have a significant deleterious effect on those holdovers from December.

Just for TROS to simply avoid falling behind TLJ in LTD gross after the first 5 weeks (since that's the last full week we have for it), its performance in its first two weeks would have had to have been over 20% more than TLJ's, assuming the same release date and the same percentage drops each week. That means an opening week of nearly $350M and second week of about $153M, if we keep everything proportional to the actual gross. And even then TROS still would still be making less money each week after Week 2, so realistically that 20% would have to be more like 25% or so just to avoid falling behind TLJ by the end of its run.

For TROS to make as much money in total post-Week 2 as TLJ did (~$150.5M total; $133M for Weeks 3-5), then that would have presented an even bigger challenge for it. For the total gross of Weeks 3-5 to match TLJ's, it would have had either A) dropped no more than about 39.3% from Week 2 (assuming Weeks 4 & 5 still had drops of , respectively), which as we see is a rarity for December releases for their first full post-New Year's week (only Avatar dropped less than 40% that week), or B) grossed more than TLJ in its first two weeks. Like, a lot more. Like, even better than the "don't fall behind TLJ in LTD gross" scenario in the previous paragraph.

Let's continue to assume that Weeks 4 & 5 still had the same drops 55.4% and 37.8%. That means that to produce no less than $133M in the Week 3-5 period it would have to do about $77.2M in Week 3. If we generously assume that was a consequence of a drop of only 55% in Week 3, then it would have had to make no less than $170M in Week 2, which would already be one of the highest second weeks ever. If we assume a more likely drop of 60%, that would entail a Week 2 gross of $193M. And if we assume the actual drop of 63.8%, that would produce a Week 2 gross of over $213M. But given that its Week 2 was the post-Christmas week (hence the 56% drop from Week 1), these hypothetical Week 2 results would have likely entailed grossing no less than $386M in Week 1 (a total bested only by Endgame and TFA), and potentially as high as $485M, which would have set a new #1 record for best opening week. These figures also entail estimated lifetime grosses ranging from over $700M to over $830M. Looking at it this way, any estimate of TROS's lifetime gross that was within that range was overly optimistic. It may have needed an opening weekend of nearly $300M to reach that high of a lifetime gross, which would be the second-highest opening weekend ever.

So, even had TROS made as much in its first two weeks as TLJ did lifetime, its performance in the weeks after New Year's might have only been on par with what TLJ made in its post-New Year's weeks, simply as a consequence of releasing five days closer to New Year's. And even if it had did what it needed to do in December in order to simply end up at ~$620M lifetime so it could match what TLJ did lifetime, its total gross for all weeks past Week 2 would almost certainly still be considerably less than TLJ's (so a graph showing TROS's percent lead/deficit would show a big lead after the first two weeks, but one that slowly dropped until it ended up around 0%).

Given its release date, there was no way in hell TROS even stood a chance of matching TLJ unless it had either an absolutely massive debut that broke shattered completely atomized all expectations, or had a post-New Year's drop that was way softer than anyone ought to have reasonably expected. Being positioned five days closer to New Year's than TLJ meant TROS had the big post-New Year's drop earlier, thus negatively impacting it in terms of relative LTD performance compared to TLJ. Even I failed to realize that, leading to overly optimistic projections. Had TROS released on Dec. 13 instead, it would almost certainly be doing a lot better in LTD gross than it has. Maybe still not as good as TLJ, but the gap would definitely be a lot closer. As I said in a previous post, why Disney didn't do that is anyone's guess, but since studios are obviously going to be well aware of the typical post-New Year's drop, it probably doesn't concern them much if a film takes a 10% or so hit to its lifetime gross if it releases a few days closer to New Year's. They're probably more concerned about what it does in December than what it does in January & February.


I showed my work. I provided the data. I rest my case.

Now would any naysayers like the OP like to put their money where their mouth is and show their work? I mean, really show their work? I've gotten nothing from the OP besides the sorry excuse of a "rebuttal" that is "Doesn't matter because Jumanji" (one of a host of factually baseless or downright bad-faith claims he's made), and some others haven't even done that much. It's time to offer something of actual merit, backed by actual substantive data. Put up or shut up. Otherwise, none of you have a leg to stand on in this discussion.

P.S.: And for what it's worth, TROS still has had a considerably better January than TLJ did in absolute dollar terms, and, while its drop in Week 3 was rough, when comparing the two films for each day that was free and clear of any comparisons to a December date TROS has been consistently experiencing smaller week-over-week drops. This has been sufficient to keep TLJ's LTD gross as a percentage of TLJ's from declining any further, and if this keeps up its late-life figures may start to consistently tie or beat TLJ's. Granted, that's too little, too late to mean much in the long term, but as CGP Grey said "even just decelerating the negative is a positive."

P.P.S.: Zorg, do I really have to start a thread just to go over the Kinect thing again? I mean, I totally will if you want me to. But that's up to you. I made my points and provided all the relevant data making my case, but I'm up for reiterating them.



Lonely_Dolphin said:
starcraft said:

Excellent, then we agree these people exist.

I only said it's easy to figure out who you're talking about, I very clearly did not agree that your slanderous insinuations about said people are fair n accurate.

That you refuse to provide proof and would instead believe I said that which I did not tells me you probably didn't get this idea of SW agenda pushing VGCers from anything real, only your imagination. You like the movies and think they're good, therefore you can't stand the idea that they have objective flaws and people find them bad. You've convinced yourself that anyone who doesn't like the movies must do so for invalid reasons, that they hate because they're sexist/racist/misogynist/etc. When you can't attack their arguments, attack their character.

That is just an assumption about your thought process here, but a fair one. I've given you the chance to show this isn't true, but all you've done is reinforce it.

Slanderous insinuations whoa settle down there son this isn't WW3

To disprove you, I would need to find one, single example of someone using the phrase SJW and star wars in the same post without irony. Obviously I am not going to devote even a minute to doing that. But as I said in my previous post, if you genuinely believe those people do not exist (and you've already acknowledged you have your own ideas about who they are), then we will never agree.

We do agree however, that you just made a series of assumptions.



starcraft - Playing Games = FUN, Talking about Games = SERIOUS

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Man, the lengths some will go to desperately try to prove that these films didn't underperform because of a poor reception from many fans. In the end, I suppose the calender is the largest determining factor of how your film will perform, not the reception of said film. I guess Disney are a bunch of incompetent morons for not knowing this. I mean, they have been in the movie business for over 80 years and they didn't know that if they only released their film one week earlier it would be sitting at $1.3B+ by now. Oh, boy.



thismeintiel said:

Man, the lengths some will go to desperately try to prove that these films didn't underperform because of a poor reception from many fans. In the end, I suppose the calender is the largest determining factor of how your film will perform, not the reception of said film. I guess Disney are a bunch of incompetent morons for not knowing this. I mean, they have been in the movie business for over 80 years and they didn't know that if they only released their film one week earlier it would be sitting at $1.3B+ by now. Oh, boy.

The calendar argument hasn't even been the worst post in here in the last 15 or so posts



starcraft said:

Obviously I am not going to devote even a minute to doing that.

Obviously because you can't find proof as there is none. Anyway I'll go ahead and follow your advice, as one who makes claims while refusing to explain or back them up but still asserting that they're correct is textbook definition of unreasonable.



Lonely_Dolphin said:
starcraft said:

Obviously I am not going to devote even a minute to doing that.

Obviously because you can't find proof as there is none. Anyway I'll go ahead and follow your advice, as one who makes claims while refusing to explain or back them up but still asserting that they're correct is textbook definition of unreasonable.

Ok Boomer!



starcraft - Playing Games = FUN, Talking about Games = SERIOUS

As expected, no real rebuttals so far. No attempts to use data (that hasn't been cherry-picked) to back up any arguments. Just flat out dismissal, continued failure to understand my point, and deliberate misrepresentation of my argument. I have not once in the past two weeks when I brought up the subject of the calendar claimed that TROS's release date was the sole factor in determining how much its gross underperformed vs. TLJ's. It should have been obvious by now that my argument has been that TROS releasing closer to New Year's considerably exacerbated the situation, a claim I've backed up with ample evidence. I've said on multiple times now over the past two weeks that TROS might not have outgrossed TLJ even had it released a week earlier, only that the gap would be closer than it currently is.

Y'now, for some people, no amount of evidence or reasoning is good enough. They've made up their minds, and are utterly unconcerned with the facts. Anything to rationalize an irrational and persistent grudge against a movie, I guess. By believing that TROS's drop from TLJ is 100% a result of fan reaction and that the obvious effects of the calendar that impact every December release had absolutely no effect this time, they can use that to feel vindicated in their hate towards TLJ, and any data that undermines that claim is summarily rejected. I really shouldn't have expected anything less from a certain someone given his long history of making bad-faith arguments (e.g., anything to do with TLJ's second weekend), unsourced statements (e.g., "Disney expected $1.8B for TLJ"), and flat-out nonsensical fabrications (e.g., "VCRs hurt The Empire Strikes Back"). It's funny that someone who likes to cry "fake news" a lot is responsible for spreading more falsehoods than anyone else in these sorts of threads over the past two years.

It's like trying to argue with someone who denies other facts because they run contrary to their worldview or some other position they hold for political, religious, cultural, or other emotional reasons. Whether it's something big like denying some aspect of science because they don't like what it implies (hmmmm...), or something small like denying certain facts regarding sales data because of reasons of fandom, people that have their minds made up for such emotional reasons don't want to admit even the possibility of error on their part, much less be open to correction, because admission of error is a sign of weakness. Being in error would undermine something central to their being.

In regards to box office figures, one of the more ridiculous and extreme examples I've seen of denying the facts was with Captain Marvel's returns. So many people across the internet (namely so-called "anti-SJWs") were convinced that the movie would fail. Disney went woke, so they had to go broke, right? Nobody wanted feminist claptrap in the MCU, plus there's what Brie Larson said in that interview, so the movie had to flop, right? Except that's not what happened. The movie became a success. Instead of admitting they were wrong, many of the people that were convinced that the movie would fail decided that, instead of admitting they were wrong, they were going to double down on their position and still claim that the movie did fail. Of course, that necessarily requires them to also believe that it was a great big conspiracy on Disney's part to cover up that failure. They claimed, without a shred of evidence, that Disney bought most of the tickets to the movie, that they did something that's not only even worse for business than just letting it flop, but also probably criminal fraud, just to convince the public that a superhero movie didn't fail.

That's how outlandish some people can get when it comes to denying the facts over something even as simple as how much a movie made in theaters. All because the facts ran contrary to some aspect of their worldview. A businessman concerned that revelations about their products being harmful could hurt their bottom line. A religious leader concerned that discoveries in biology and geology undermine their authority. An angry fan that lacks the emotional maturity to get over a goddamn movie. All people primed to deny inconvenient truths. That's the world we live in, sadly.

And with that said, I'm done arguing. There's no point trying to convince people that won't even acknowledge simple data even with it staring them right in the face. Anyone that wants to have an actual serious conversation about the data, I'm up for it. Those who couldn't be bothered with something that simple, though, I have nothing more to say to you. It's clear that threads like these were made for the sole purpose of justifying new ways to complain about Star Wars, not to have a serious discussion about box office figures.