Welcome to Box Office Boffo.
What is Box Office Boffo?
Box Office Boffo is a writing project about popular movies. I intend to screen and write a post about every #1 movie in the U.S. since 1970.
What do you mean, #1 movie? Like Titanic?
Yes, like Titanic. But not just like Titanic — also like Flashdance and The Godfather and Pretty in Pink and Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song and Cocktail and They Live and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Last Tango in Paris and Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol and Ishtar (yes, Ishtar). Every week there’s a #1 movie at the box office, and I’m going to watch them all.
Why 1970? Why not earlier?
That’s how far back the records go — at least on Wikipedia. As far as I can tell, there isn’t really organized data from before 1970. This appeared to be true when I wrote it, but Wikipedia user Simpsonguy1987 added the 1960-1969 lists a few weeks after I started the blog. I was born in 1970, so that’s my updated reason for starting the sequence in 1970. Plus, the #1s from the 1960s frankly look a little boring. I may get to them too.
How many movies is that?
As of November 25, 2011, the date Box Office Boffo started, there have been 1,124 #1 movies in the U.S. since 1970. The first movie in the series is They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?, which was the #1 movie on January 4, 1970 (it was also the #1 movie in the last week of 1969). The 1,124th movie in the series is The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1, which hit #1 on November 20, 2011.
Won’t that take an awfully long time?
Yes. It will take many, many years to finish. By the time Box Office Boffo is finished, the total list of movies will be way past 1,500.
I think I heard about a project like this involving hit singles. Was that you too?
You’re probably thinking of Popular, by the estimable Tom Ewing. Since 2003 he has been blogging every #1 hit single in the U.K. As of this writing, he’s gotten all the way up to 1993. Popular provided the inspiration for this blog.