Operations, Information and Decisions Papers

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

6-2007

Publication Source

Management Science

Volume

53

Issue

6

Start Page

881

Last Page

893

DOI

10.1287/mnsc.1060.0668

Abstract

Movie studios often have to choose among thousands of scripts to decide which ones to turn into movies. Despite the huge amount of money at stake, this process—known as green-lightingin the movie industry—is largely a guesswork based on experts’ experience and intuitions. In this paper, we propose a new approach to help studios evaluate scripts that will then lead to more profitable green-lighting decisions. Our approach combines screenwriting domain knowledge, natural-language processing techniques, and statistical learning methods to forecast a movie’s return on investment (ROI) based only on textual information available in movie scripts. We test our model in a holdout decision task to show that our model is able to significantly improve a studio’s gross ROI.

Keywords

entertainment industry, new product development, forecasting, contingency data analysis

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Date Posted: 27 November 2017

This document has been peer reviewed.