Hmm I didn’t ask the question, The New York Times wrote about this myth, and it sounded off to me, so I decided to investigate it, since I have the data. But I disagree with your assessment: this very much is about the power of film reviews vs the audience’s own journey through risk mitigation, especially with regards to pre-awareness (or lack thereof) about a title. There’s (clearly) substantial misconception in the industry about what the audience journey to making a decision to consume is, and so I think this is actually a very worthwhile question and an extremely worthy debate. Nothing good can happen in the industry unless and until studio executives understand that they are actually dealing with an expert audience, one that has deep expertise not only in the product itself, but in the various cognitive strategies available to de-risk the decision to consume it. In that sense (and a few others, such as looking at the impact of production budgets) this post is very much about ROI, although it’s almost impossible to conduct ROI studies without studio proprietary data. I’m not even sure there’s internal consensus in each studio on ROI … . I read your post, and your approach is interesting, although I feel like I’ve seen this many times over, and frankly I think more needs to be done (and that’s where my research is at USC), especially incorporating cognitive science and a more AI-driven approach (to make it more scalable). We should connect. Thanks for taking the time to comment.