List of highest-grossing films

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The following is a non-definitive list of the all-time highest-grossing films.


Worldwide highest-grossing films

Eighty percent of the films in the top 50 were released after 2000, while no film prior to 1977 appears in the chart because ticket-price inflation, population size and ticket purchasing trends which are not considered. 2009 is the most represented year on the chart with seven films. Next stands 2010 with 6. Figures are given in United States dollars (USD).

Issues with calculation

Due to the long-term effects of inflation, notably the significant increase of movie theater ticket prices, the list unadjusted for inflation gives far more weight to more recent films; a film in 1910, given much lower ticket prices at that time, would have to sell close to 100 times as many tickets as a 2007 film in order for the two to have equal gross takings.[2] Further complications are added by changing currency values. The unadjusted list, while commonly found in the press, is therefore largely meaningless for comparing films widely separated in time, as many films from earlier eras will never appear on a modern unadjusted list, despite achieving higher commercial success when adjusted for price increases.[3] Some have suggested that studios prefer not to make inflation adjustments because doing so would reduce the grossing numbers and eliminate the ability to advertise new box-office records.[3] Yet another complication that has mainly arisen since 2000 is releases in multiple formats for which different ticket prices are charged. One notable example was Mamma Mia!, which benefitted from a sing-a-long rerelease for karaoke fans. Another notable example of this phenomenon is Avatar, which was released in 3D and IMAX, almost two-thirds of tickets for that film were for 3D showings with an average price of $10, and about one-sixth were for IMAX showings with an average price over $14.50, compared to a 2010 average price of $7.61 for 2D films.[4]

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