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nobody knows anything

TWO INFORMATION AGGREGATION MECHANISMS FOR PREDICTING THE OPENING WEEKEND BOX OFFICE REVENUES OF FILMS

By David Court, Benjamin Gillen, Jordi McKenzie and Charles R. Plott

Many entertainment and, more generally, cultural products are characterised by significant levels of uncertainty regarding their ultimate appeal to consumers. This is perhaps no place better observed than in the theatrical film industry, where the famous ‘nobody knows anything’ quote of William Goldman has often been used to support this idea. We present two aggregation mechanisms to predict the opening weekend box office success of films and show they are able to provide useful predictions of box office revenues. Continue reading “TWO INFORMATION AGGREGATION MECHANISMS FOR PREDICTING THE OPENING WEEKEND BOX OFFICE REVENUES OF FILMS”

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SOMEBODY MUST KNOW SOMETHING!

By John Sedgwick and Mike Pokorny

film

William Goldman, the screenwriter of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, posited that ‘nobody knows anything’ about the financial risks associated with the film industry, elevated by the Harvard professor Richard Caves to the ‘nobody knows’ principle.  Our research suggests otherwise: analysis of the tremendous economic success of film studios over the past 100 years suggests to us that film making is not such a risky business and that somebody would seem to know something!

Continue reading “SOMEBODY MUST KNOW SOMETHING!”

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