Hey Cultural Pundits, Don’t Get Cocky: Using Solo’s Demise to Discuss Bad Narratives

I think this one headline captures the surreality of Disney’s box office position: Solo bombs with $150 million global debut The headline above uses “bomb”, sarcastically, though most websites eagerly called it a flop unsarcastically. Yet, most films (and their studios) would love to open a movie over $100 million dollars in its opening weekend. ...

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Weekly News Round Up – 8 June 2018

Sorry for the delay in posting these. It has been a bit tough getting back up since my family emergency. The goal is to release one of these a week going forward, so fingers crossed. Since it’s been awhile let’s start with the most important story of the last two weeks: The Biggest Impact of ...

Disney-Lucasfilm Deal – Appendix: Feature Film Finances Explained!

(This is an “Appendix article” to a multi-part series answering the question: “How Much Money Did Disney Make on the Lucasfilm deal?” Previous sections are here: Part I: Introduction & “The Time Value of Money Explained” Appendix: Feature Film Finances Explained! Part II: Star Wars Movie Revenue So Far Part III: The Economics of Blockbusters ...

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No, Seriously, Why Don’t You Use Data to Make Movies?

If you want to know the “holy grail” for data scientists, I’ll tell you: Predicting box office performance of movie scripts. Here’s how it goes. An aspiring data scientist—ranging from bright undergraduate in computer science to a Ph.D. candidate in statistics to even tenured professors—looks for a new topic. They’re bored by analyzing mortgage applications ...

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Most Important Story of the Week and Other Reads – 11 May 2018

Welcome to my first “weekly news round up”! This isn’t a comprehensive list of every story that premiered this week or last week or whenever it came out. (I may have just found it and wanted to share.) You have Twitter and access to Variety/Hollywood Reporter/Deadline so you don’t need me for that. (Or try ...

How much money will Disney make (or lose) on the Lucasfilm deal? Part I

(This is Part I of a multi-part series answering the question: “How Much Money Did Disney Make on the Lucasfilm deal?” Previous sections are here: Part I: Introduction & “The Time Value of Money Explained” Appendix: Feature Film Finances Explained! Part II: Star Wars Movie Revenue So Far Part III: The Economics of Blockbusters Part ...

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Introducing: “Analysis Articles”

Tomorrow, I’m going roll out part one of a potentially four (or more) part series analyzing The Walt Disney Company’s acquisition of Lucasfilm. I’m going to ask a simple, yet tough to answer question, how much money did Disney make off that deal? When I launched this website, I decided specifically not to call it ...

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My Process

Most organizations–from corporations to sports teams to armies to universities to government agencies to non-profits–think they use a sound process to make important decisions. But they aren’t. They are arriving at the easiest decisions. I’ll use a media example to show the worst process. Basically, political pundits opine and opine and opine for months about ...

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Theme 1: It’s Not Data, It’s Decision-making

The big buzzword in business is still “data”. Or better yet, “big data”. Or more complicated sounding, “analytics”. Better than just analytics is “advanced analytics” which is like analytics but more advanced. With all that data, a bunch of “algorithms” are figuring everything out. Take your pick. Sure other trends have picked up in the ...

Why Does Hollywood Make Bad Movies?

Before I start writing on a new project, I often feel compelled to explain myself. Why am I putting my words to paper (or coded into bits, since you’re reading this on the web)? Why are my words worthy of your time to read? Why do I want to get these thoughts out there? On ...

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