The recent Midnight In Paris garnered a lot of press attention for becoming Woody Allen’s highest grossing movie ever. This is true, but only if you ignore Antz (which you should), and if you pretend that movie tickets in 1975 cost the same that they did in 2012 (which you shouldn’t).
So, using the National Association of Theatre Owners as a reference, I calculated, based on the average ticket price of a movie’s year, approximately how many tickets it sold, and multiplied that by how much tickets cost in 2012. Therefore, the right-hand column represents the amount of money the movie would have made, had it sold the same number of tickets in 2012. Excluded are movies whose stats are not available (i.e. Take the Money and Run), and movies that were not released into theatres (i.e. Don’t Drink the Water).
Analysis is pretty straightforward: he was very popular, then less popular, and then not popular at all. Were it not for the financial comeback of Midnight in Paris, a chart would be a line more-or-less straight down, spiked with the occasional modest hit. It should also be noted that people generally don’t like movies that will depress them. Ultimately, I think the biggest take-away message is a confirmation of the old show-business idiom: there’s no accounting for taste.