Batman & BATNA (podcast)

This is a repost of this Substack: POV40IQ.

An inflation-adjusted chart of Global Box Office + Home Video compared to budget. All in millions. 

The inspiration from this episode was Tyler Cowen’s response to Tim Ferriss’s question: What would you put on a billboard? 

“If you look at billboards we actually have, what do you see on those billboards? The billboards I see a lot of them are advertisements for insurance. Some of them are, “Don’t drive drunk.” You see a bail bondsman on billboards and suicide hotlines. I guess I would study the market and pick one of those four things like, “Buy this insurance, bail bondsman, suicide hotline, don’t drive drunk.”

It’s to ask, what’s the business model? 

This episode covers a 1975ish onward look at the movie business model. Briefly sequentially, the movie making business model looked like this:

  1. National advertising plus national distribution (Jaws)
  2. ^ plus merchandise (Star Wars)
  3. ^ ^ plus home video (VHS then DVD)
  4. ^ ^ ^ plus more movie screens (everything’s bigger in _____)
  5. ^ ^ ^ ^ plus international 

The number of movies made and the kinds of movies made are the direct results of the underlying business model.

If you want EVEN MORE, there’s this pre-1975 look at movies as well as the John Cena apology.

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