Betcha didn't know that the 1965 epic melodrama ' Dr. Zhivago' sold more tickets in movie theaters than the 2008 mega Batman hit "The Dark Knight"?
Or that the 1953 Vincent Price horror film "House Of Wax" was bigger at the American movie box office than either "Shrek" or "Spiderman 3".
According to the website Box Office Mojo, the average ticket price in 1939 was 23 cents.
At the end of 2009 it was approximately 35 TIMES higher due to inflation.
The Top 5 Box Office Hits in the USA
1. Gone With The Wind (1939)
2. Star Wars (the original 1977 film)
3. The Sound Of Music (1965)
4. E.T. (1982)
5. The Ten Commandments (1956)
Now, the tricky part. Neither the inflated box office receipts or the uninflated tell us which were the most popular films, because they don't account for viewings outside of movie theaters such as TV , or video recordings viewed at home, and some of the highest rated films, such as Gone With The Wind had multiple theater runs.
Information like this however, which is not a secret, does make you wonder why news programs regularly make such ridiculous prononcements such as " Transformers V" had the greatest opening weekend box office in HISTORY, when it is all based on inflation caused inaccuracies.