While box-office pundits love to talk about the highest openers and grossers either domestically or abroad, one of the less talked about things is profitability.
That’s because the measure is much harder to calculate. International box-office receipts in particular have less of a return on the dollar than domestic ones due to differing agreements and currency fluctuations. Marketing budgets differ wildly and can add as much as the production budget again to the bottom line. Additional revenue streams (product placement, rights sales) are often not taken into account. Even production budget numbers are often fudged by creative studio accounting.
Nevertheless, The Wrap has attempted to come up with a Top Ten list calculating the return on investment of films in 2013 based purely on their international grosses and their production budgets.
The result was that “Insidious Chapter 2” came out on top with a 31.1x return on investment (ROI). With a budget of just $5 million, it grossed an impressive $160.4 million this year.
Microbudget horror dominated the top slots – in second was “The Purge” which cost $3M and made $89.3M for a 28.8x ROI. In fourth was “The Conjuring” which cost $20M and made $316.7M for a 14.8x ROI. The full list can be seen below: