Chapter 8

Bestsellers and Blockbusters: Movies, Music, and Books

W.D. Walls,    University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada


This chapter is a survey on the economics of blockbusters and bestsellers in popular entertainment and culture, with a particular focus on empirical methods and applications to movies, music, and books. We first survey various conceptual models on the economics of superstars and the winner-take-all nature of product success. We then survey the range of statistical methodologies that can be used to quantify formally the winner-take-all nature of the distribution of success while estimating the correlates of success across competing titles. In separate subsections for movies, music, and books, we survey the empirical ...

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