Another cinematic year has come to an end but there is still time to analyse what the past year’s box office meant for the film industry. Today we will look at the worldwide top 10 highest-grossing films of the year, what their success might mean for the industry in the future and how it compares to prior years. So before we leap into 2023 let’s see what 2022 brought us.
2022s Box Office Top 10
At the time of writing these are the top 10 highest-grossing films at the worldwide box office in 2022 according to Box Office Mojo.
10. Moon Man (Over $460,237,600)
9. Water Gate Bridge (Over $626,571,600)
8. Thor: Love and Thunder (Over $760,928,000)
7. The Batman (Over $770,945,500)
6. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (Over $831,942,300)
5. Minions: The Rise of Gru (Over $939,628,200)
4. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (Over $955,775,800)
3. Jurassic World: Dominion (Over $1,001,978,000)
2. Top Gun: Maverick (Over $1,488,732,800)
1. Avatar: The Way of Water (Over $1,749,253,900)
In total the top 10 highest-grossing films earned over $9,587,993,700. There were 2 non-English language films in the top 10 (Moon Man and Water Gate Bridge). 4 of the big earners were produced by companies owned by Disney (Thor: Love and Thunder, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness came from Marvel Studios while Avatar: The Way of Water was from 20th Century Studios), 2 had some involvement from Universal (Minions: The Rise of Gru and Jurassic World: Dominion), 1 was distributed by Paramount (Top Gun: Maverick) and 1 came from Warner Bros (The Batman).
The 2020s At The Box Office
How does this list and its revenue look when viewed next to the rest of the 2020s? Well, comparatively, 2022 was a very solid year. With pandemic restrictions firmly relaxed across many countries cinema-goers have returned to the theatres in good numbers. The top 10 movies this year earned almost 3 times what 2020’s top 10 earned. It even managed to outperform 2021’s top 10 by around $1.9 billion. This year also saw 3 movies cross the $1 billion mark and all 3 came from different studios. Interestingly, this also marked the first year since 2015 (excluding 2020 and 2021 because of the pandemic) when the year’s two highest-grossing films were not affiliated with Disney.
But what does this box office top 10 tell us about the industry and what the future potentially holds?
Lessons From 2022
2022 showed us primarily that franchises continue to be the big audience draw. So franchises are still likely to produce the biggest hits going forward. However, Top Gun: Maverick and even Avatar: The Way of Water have proven that smaller franchises still have the possibility to attract huge box office numbers. Additionally, the top 3 have shown that non-Disney-made films may have a chance to earn greater attention than in the pre-covid landscape.
Secondly, while international language pictures may be struggling in the box office rankings post-covid, with only 2 non-English films in this year’s top 10 (2021 had 3 and 2020 had 5), 2022 showed they still have potential to pull in good earnings in the future with Chinese language films proving to be a particularly big draw recently with growing interest in international releases. We could possibly see more big international hits if they are given better worldwide distribution.
Finally, while these figures prove the industry has certainly not reached pre-pandemic box office levels it is still in a healthy spot. This year’s top 10 managed to outperform 2016s (over $9,320,848,700) and while it is a way off from 2018s and 2019s numbers those movies were dominated by highly anticipated franchise entries, like the conclusion to Marvel’s Infinity Saga, which will be hard to immediately replicate. Thus 2022 showcases that the industry is on the road to recovery. Hopefully, 2023 will yield even more interesting and healthy box office results.
Also Read: Time To Rethink The Box Office Film Charts?