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What is the most viewed film of ALL TIME?


TomJH
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And this applies to both theatre AND television viewings.

 

My nomination goes to THE WIZARD OF OZ.

 

This is primarily because so many new generations of fans have discovered the film on television (as they have many other films, I admit) but how many other films are going to gather the whole family around like this one? (Okay, It's a Wonderful Life).

 

Other films, like Gone with the Wind or even Casablanca, are probably going to have the kids leave the room while the parents watch it. Obviously, though, others will be able to make strong cases for those other three titles I just supplied, as well.

 

I strongly suspect that those four titles may be, thanks to televsion, theatre and DVD and video sales, the four most viewed titles ever. Of course, I've left out more recent phenomenal successes like Titantic and Avatar, because they haven't been available on television for decades the way these four films have. There's also, of course, the Star Wars franchise.

 

*THE WINNER:*

 

22281ozthe-wizard-of-oz-posters2.jpg

 

Or it it?

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*THE WINNER:* Wizard of Oz

Or it it?

 

Yes, it is.

 

 

(Okay, It's a Wonderful Life).

 

Not since it's been on NBC.

 

WOO is worth the crummy commercials (hey, tell me you don't watch A Christmas Story at least once on TBS even if you own the DVD?) when it's shown. IAWL is not. Scrooge with Alastair Sim was a must-see when it was on once a year.

 

I hate GWTW and Casablanca is not a family film.

 

I second your nomination. In fact, I further nominate it for most perfect picture ever made.

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I have to go along with OZ. It was broadcast annually long before many of the traditional Christmas movies were, and still shows up twice a year or so on TBS and TNT. And I manage to at least see it at least once a year.

 

 

*Gone With The Wind* used to have, for years, the distinction of being the only well loved classic that was never shown on television up until the mid '80's or so.

 

 

Sepiatone

 

 

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> {quote:title=Sepiatone wrote:}{quote}

> I have to go along with OZ. It was broadcast annually long before many of the traditional Christmas movies were, and still shows up twice a year or so on TBS and TNT. And I manage to at least see it at least once a year.

>

> *Gone With The Wind* used to have, for years, the distinction of being the only well loved classic that was never shown on television up until the mid '80's or so.

>

I also would have to agree with OZ...and you're wrong about GWTT. It premiered on television in *1976* .

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I am sorry to say that I am so cynical that I believe the most viewed movies of all time were most likely the anti-STD movies of WWII as they were shown each month to millions of soldiers in all theatres of operations and it often happened that movies which were captured by an enemy would be shown to their own troops in order to stress the importance of the issue while providing a relief from the repetition of their own movies.

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>THE WIZARD OF OZ is the one classic film with which virtually EVERYONE of all ages is familiar with.

 

Do you recall when the first broadcast network aired this film?

 

Back in the old days before cable TV, they could get from 40 to 50 million people watching a single showing of one famous movie.

 

Today, an old film shown on ABC, NBC, or CBS might have only 15 million watching it.

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> {quote:title=finance wrote:}{quote}THE WIZARD OF OZ is the one classic film with which virtually EVERYONE of all ages is familiar with. That and SKYSCRAPER SOULS.

Ah yes, *Skyscraper Souls*, a household term for decades. How can I forget my grandmother, with misty-eyed fondness, telling me how I must watch this film, and how it was her introduction to actors with reversible names.

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I would say that your choice of "The Wizard of Oz" is *one* of the most watched movies but "Its A Wonderful Life" would be a close tie

 

We need to be fair and don't leave out the TV classics. "The Andy Griffith Show" and "I Love Lucy" is still running showing their staying power.

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I know that The Sound of Music is an immensely popular film. However, when it comers to the subject of all time viewership, I wonder of the film isn't perhaps hurt by those who either don't care for musicals or excessive sentiment.

 

I consider myself a movie buff but must be honest and admit that I have never sat down to watch it.

 

On the other hand, unless there are people who have got a thing against the Munchkins, ;) I can't really envision anyone not wanting to give The Wizard of Oz a viewing.

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*Never trust a man with two first names*

 

I know I heard that phrase somewhere, but I don't remember hearing it on MST3K. But if Google says it, it must be true.

 

 

Joel Hodgson used the phrase, "Never trust a man with two first names, especially if one of them's a woman's" in an episode of Mystery Science 3000 lampooning The Legend of Dinosaurs (Kyôryuu: Kaichô no densetsu). It is used during the opening banter between Joel and the "scientists

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I know this is an apples and oranges kind of comparison, but here are the domestic and worldwide box offices of the top grossing films adjusted for inflation. Note that The Wizard of Oz isn't in either list yet I agree it is probably the most viewed film of all time. Neither is Casablanca in either list, nor Skyscraper Souls for that matter.

 

Note that Avatar is number two in all time international box office totals, only fourteen in domestic totals. I wonder what people in other countries saw in it?

 

DOMESTIC TOP TWENTY ADJUSTED FOR INFLATION

1 Gone with the Wind MGM $1,620,397,900 1939

2 Star Wars Fox $1,428,519,200 1977

3 The Sound of Music Fox $1,142,171,300 1965

4 E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial Uni. $1,137,671,800 1982

5 Titanic Par. $1,087,949,000 1997

6 The Ten Commandments Par. $1,050,620,000 1956

7 Jaws Uni. $1,027,192,100 1975

8 Doctor Zhivago MGM $995,566,4001965

9 The Exorcist WB $887,005,300 1973

10 Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs Dis. $874,180,000 1937

11 101 Dalmatians Dis. $801,336,400 1961

12 The Empire Strikes Back Fox $787,408,7001980

13 Ben-Hur MGM $785,960,0001959

14 Avatar Fox $779,987,300 2009

15 Return of the Jedi Fox $754,356,500 1983

16 Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace Fox $724,308,000 1999

17 The Sting Uni. $714,925,700 1973

18 The Lion King BV $714,590,5001994

19 Raiders of the Lost Ark Par. $709,978,3001981

20 Jurassic Park Uni. $691,370,8001993

 

 

INTERNATIONAL TOP TEN BOX OFFICE ADJUSTED FOR INFLATION

1 Gone with the Wind $3,301,400,000 1939

2 Avatar $2,782,300,000 2009

3 Star Wars $2,710,800,000 1977

4 Titanic $2,413,800,000T 1997

5 The Sound of Music $2,269,800,000 1965

6 E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial $2,216,800,000 1982

7 The Ten Commandments $2,098,600,000 1956

8 Doctor Zhivago $1,988,600,000 1965

9 Jaws $1,945,100,000 1975

10 Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs $1,746,100,000 1937

 

Home video is not accounted for in these lists.

 

 

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Fred C Dobbs Said

 

"Today an old film on ABC, NBC, Or CBS may have only 15 million people watching it.:

 

The Major networks, (including FOX) very rarely show an old film. The only exceptions are probally the yearly showing of It's A Wonderful Life on NBC, and ABC's showing of The Ten Comandments on Easter. I don't think their rating are over 15 million.

 

 

 

(At this point in time you the major networks don't even show a Movie Of The Week. They leave that to Lifetime. The only exception is The Hallmark Hall Of Fame, which reciently moved from CBS to ABC.)

 

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According to Wikipedia- *The Wizard of Oz* debuted on CBS in 1956 with an audience of 45 million. It became an annual television event in 1959 airing in December. (Until color television became popular in the early to mid-1960s, most people saw the entire film in black and white).

 

Beginning in 1967, the broadcast moved to February.

 

In 1968, NBC picked up the broadcast rights and aired the film every April until 1976 when the broadcast rights reverted back to CBS.

 

Up until the advent of home video in the late 1970s, this was the way the majority of people watched the film. Once home video became popular, people began buying the film so they could watch it when they wanted.

 

The film continued to air on network television until 1998. That year Turner Entertainment acquired the broadcast rights and began airing the film at least once (and sometimes several times) a year.

 

The Library of Congress has declared *The Wizard of Oz* the most watched film of all time.

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When TNT first premiered, Ted Turner so wanted to start with the channel airing his favorite film. However, GWTW was tied up for a few more years on CBS where it was an annual tradition. He got CBS to relinquish its rights by extending the contract for CBS to air WIZARD OF OZ.

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