Digital pirates have been more active in swiping illegal copies of top Hollywood releases this summer compared with last year, according to new data.
For the period between June 21-Sept. 9, 2015, the five most-pirated films — led by Warner Bros.’ “Mad Max: Fury Road” — were downloaded on torrent networks worldwide 85.34 million times, according to piracy-tracking firm Excipio. That’s a 29% increase over 66 million during the same time period last year, when “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” was the No. 1 target of Internet thieves.
One reason for the piracy uptick may simply be that Hollywood released more popular movies this summer. In the U.S., box office revenue was the second-best on record, after 2014 hit a seven-year low, with ticket sales of $4.48 billion between May 1 to Labor Day weekend, according to Rentrak.
Indeed, the top five movies pirated globally piracy also performed well in theaters — and they’re clustered around sci-fi and fantasy themes, which appeal to the young-male profile of peer-to-peer downloaders.
“Mad Max: Fury Road,” which has generated $374 million at the box office worldwide, had 22.90 million shares on torrent networks over the summer. That was followed by Universal’s “Jurassic World” (18.16 million); Disney/Marvel’s “Avengers: Age of Ultron” (15.87 million); Lionsgate’s “Insurgent” (14.46 million); and Paramount’s “Terminator: Genesis” (13.94 million), which sagged at the U.S. box office but has done well overseas.
In the U.S., the five most-pirated movies for the summer of 2015 were: “Max Max: Fury Road” (1.75 million downloads); “Jurassic World” (1.21 million); “Insurgent” (1.16 million); “Ted 2” (1.10 million); and “Avengers: Age of Ultron” (1.09 million).