Movie Execs Say Halo 3 Caused Bad Ticket Sales

By Chris Faylor, Oct 16, 2007 10:31am PDT Lackluster ticket sales have some film studios blaming Bungie's Halo 3 (X360) for the decline in box office revenues and worrying about the possible effects of next year's Grand Theft Auto 4 (PS3, X360) from Rockstar North.

Halo 3 amassed upwards of $300 million for publisher Microsoft in the week following its September 25 release, with over 2.7 million gamers hopping online and racking up more than 40 million hours of play across the same time span.

That's a worrying figure for the film industry, which saw ticket sales reduced by 27% for the weekend of October 5 over last year, resulting in paltry total revenue of $80 million. Couple that with the less-than-stellar performance of The Heartbreak Kid--the latest directorial effort from Dumb & Dumber writers Bobby and Peter Farrelly (pictured left)--and it's got Hollywood sweating over the eternal struggle between games and movies.

"The audience on this game is the 18-to-34 demographic, similar to what you'd see in cinemas," Janco Partners analyst Mike Hickey told Advertising Age.

"We marketed it like a film and now we're just as big or bigger than film," boasted Halo 3 product manager Josh Goldberg.

Of course, not everyone attributes tinsel town's issues to Halo 3. Some merely blame the current trend of tired formulaic rehashes and actors playing the same basic character time and time again, a criticism frequently levied against Ben Stiller's roles in There's Something About Mary, Duplex, Meet The Parents, and The Heartbreak Kid.

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  • I went to the movies this past weekend (I hadn't been there in a year or so), and realized why I just never want to go back ever again.

    First off, I went with 2 other people, so just to get in the door to see Resident Evil 3 (which was alright), cost us 9.00 per person. Thats 27$. Then we wanted some snacks and drinks, for one Large popcorn/Large soda/Large bottle of water, it was 18.00 fucking dollars. I mean, between the 3 of us were already up to like 50$ just to watch this fucking movie and eat some popcorn.

    Add this to the fact, that I have to leave my house, drive there, find parking in a packed mall, walk through the mall packed with annoying teenagers acting like morons, and then deal with other stuff inside the movie theatre (like some people who cut the line at the concession stand, or people talking on their cell phones during the movie). Like what the fuck. The movie industry really doesn't understand why people are not going to movies as much anymore?

    Alternatively, I could have bought some water, soda, and popcorn at the market for $6, and rented a high definition movie through time warner for 4.99, and watched it on my big screen HDTV, sitting on my comfy couch with my friends, and not dealing with any annoyances.

    It basically comes down to: Massively inconvenient and ridiculously overpriced vs. Massively convenient and ridiculously cheap. For what is basically the same service. The only difference is that you can't get the newest releases at home. But you know what, I can deal with that just fine I don't watch movies that often anyways, so I have no problem waiting for movies I want to see to come out on DVD/HD formats.

    Fuck movie theatres and movie companies for not understanding this.