SNL Kagan Study Confirms That Hollywood Movies Still Thrive During Tough Times

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Motion picture box office revenue reached a record $9.67 billion in 2007 despite a sluggish national economy.

Historically, theaters have been fairly recession proof, and this year looks to be no exception.

According to SNL Kagan's recent study, "Economics of Motion Pictures ," theatrical box office revenues hit a gross record of $9.67 billion domestically in 2007, besting the previous mark of $9.29 billion set in 2002.

SNL Kagan's "Economics of Motion Pictures" analyzes all films released on 1,000 or more screens from 2003 to 2007, providing 10-year pro forma models based on genre and budget range, with varying distribution structures. Included are detailed costs for action, animation, comedy, drama, family, horror, romance, sci-fi/fantasy and thriller films.

Overall, SNL Kagan found the most expensive films posted the largest revenues and average net profit. The nine films in the $90 million-$100 million range for negative costs posted an average net profit of $374.7 million under a major-studio distribution fee structure. The 80 films that cost more than $100 million to make generated an average net profit of $282.3 million. The 741 films in the study averaged $66.4 million in net profit.

Within each negative cost range, results varied by genre. The SNL Kagan study reveals that animated films performed best, with an average net profit of $230.6 million under a major studio deal. Horror films had the best results in the $0-$10 million range with an average net profit of $40.3 million, compared to $21.9 million across all negative cost ranges.

2003-2007 Average Film Profits by Genre for Major Studios
Film Genre.....Avg. Domestic Gross ($000)…..Avg. Net Profit ($000)
Tot./Wtd. Avg…..58,106.....66,353

© 2008 SNL Kagan, a division of SNL Financial LC, est. and analysis of industry data. All rights rsvd.

"When the going gets tough, consumers go to the movies," said Derek Baine, senior analyst at SNL Kagan. "Historically, theaters have been fairly recession proof, and this year looks to be no exception."

SNL Kagan's "Economics of Motion Pictures" helps film investors reduce their risk by providing economic benchmarks and proprietary financial models. The study is available exclusively as part of the SNL Kagan Information Service. For more information on this report and other data sets within the SNL Kagan Information Service, call 866.296.3743 or email SNLKaganSales @

About SNL Kagan

SNL Kagan, a division of SNL Financial LC, is a comprehensive resource for financial intelligence in the media and communications sector, including the broadcasting, cable, entertainment, motion picture, telecom, wireless, satellite, publishing and new media industries. The SNL Kagan suite of products integrates breaking news, comprehensive data and expert analysis into an electronic database available online and updated around the clock. For more information, visit: .

About Kagan Media Appraisals

Kagan Media Appraisals, the consulting arm of SNL Kagan, offers custom studies, white papers, briefings, business plans, research reports and appraisals from SNL Kagan's team of expert analysts. KMA is recognized industrywide for actionable advisories, expert opinions, best practices, regulatory assessments and market data. Contact: KaganConsulting @

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