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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.
entertainment industry, new product development, forecasting, contingency data analysis
Eliashberg, J., Hui, S. K., & Zhang, Z. (2007). From Story Line to Box Office: A New Approach for Green-Lighting Movie Scripts. Management Science, 53 (6), 881-893. http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.1060.0668
Date Posted: 27 November 2017
This document has been peer reviewed.