Big Data Goes to Hollywood: The Emergence of Big Data as a Tool in the American Film Industry

Living reference work entry


Big data techniques are increasingly used in marketing and to inform business decisions. The film industry is one area where big data that analyzes social media is being used to predict the popularity of films and to gauge audience interest. This is also an area where the stakes are high, and there has been extensive research about how to maximize the benefits of publicity and marketing campaigns. This chapter examines the relevant research, focusing on efforts to predict the success of Hollywood blockbusters. These efforts highlight a number of issues in the kind of knowledge that is generated using big data, including the representativeness of the data, the applicability of findings to different contexts, and access to data sources. The chapter weighs some of the advantages and shortcomings of big data in predicting movie success and highlights the tensions in an industry where uncertainty is high but where exceptional attention is paid to individual creativity. The chapter also discusses the implications of these new and powerful ways to make success subject to objective measurement and control.


Big data Hollywood Film industry Prediction Audiences Social media 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Oxford Internet Institute, University of OxfordOxfordUK

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