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B.O. reality gets lost in perception

Studios pay analysts handsomely to project a film’s downstream earnings during its first 10 years of release, but bizzers also can use rough figures to estimate a pic’s ancillary prospects.

Generally speaking, a pic that grosses around $100 million domestically figures to earn around $75 million to $80 million on homevideo during the 10-year timeframe. That same film could earn around $16 million or $17 million in domestic pay TV deals and $15 million in domestic free-to-air TV deals, broadly speaking. That includes broadcast, cable and pay cable players.

If that same film earns in the $140 million range internationally, it could add an estimated $50 million (or 36% of the international box office) in homevid sales. Pay TV could amount to approximately $17 million (12%) internationally and some $18 million to $20 million (roughly 14%) for free TV.

Relativity Media’s “Mirror Mirror,” for example, has earned $65 million domestically and $111 million internationally since its March 30 release. Based on those numbers, Relativity can estimate a domestic and international homevid take of around $50 million and $40 million, respectively. The pic also figures to earn another $11 million through domestic pay TV deals and $13 million through international pay TV deals. Domestic and international free TV deals could earn around $10 million and $15 million each.

But these rough numbers vary by genre. Comedy, for example, has a hard time translating with international auds, while studios count on big-budget actioners to perform well globally. Merchandising might bring in a couple of million dollars per film on average, but earn exponentially more for family fare. On top of that, factors like marketing and even time of year play heavily into a film’s grosses.