Monday, January 26, 2009

Baseball/Movie Thoughts

I'm thinking that performance doesn't fall off after an award in baseball. Comparing MVP's and Rookies of the Year to their runners up (and multiple runners up) the winners are still better after a few years. In fact, I think I'm seeing that they get more better. So I had a thought. Perhaps I'm looking at the wrong type of award, and perhaps I need to look at getting awarded a new free-agent contract, although I'd be surprised if this hasn't been done before. There's lots of examples of people sucking after landing a big contract (Zito). I think this would help me answer the question "how is this economics?" a lot better. I'm looking at performance after awards in general, and perhaps in "award" means something different in different contexts.

As for movies (why are there so many R-rated movies when they're less profitable?), I haven't made much progress here (I got some revenue data, but I'm not to the point where I can do anything with it yet). I'm still thinking about the structure of the industry and how that could affect what movies get made. It seems that economists are the only ones that are surprised by Hollywood not being a profit-maximizer. Conservative family-oriented critics like Michael Medved criticize Hollywood as being out-of-touch and more interested in awards than what sells, and friends of friends in the movie industry tell me "of course we make more R's. Movie are art, and we make art we like." I respect that. A new idea I had revolves around big festivals like Sundance or Cannes, and the goal is to see whether big distributors view themselves as "patrons of the arts" or not. Movies come to Sundance and Cannes without much financing, but they're already finished, so they just need a distributor to hype it, print a bunch of copies, and send them to theaters. So are potential distributors picking box-office winners or movies they appreciate as art? There's not much variance in the MPAA rating of Sundance/Cannes fare, but I bet there's enough to compare PG-13 to R, and I bet this data wouldn't be too hard to find, and this question (are them maxing profit?) is easier to answer than the previous one (why are there so many?)

Thoughts? Thoughts on whether it's stupid to blog about my research ideas in their infancy in general?

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