Originally Posted by Lightning Strykez!
I disagree. I think the cast's star-power carries a hefty 50% of the responsibility for drawing audiences. The look of the film and it's storyline account for 25% each. People will go and see a s*** movie just to watch their favorite actor or actress. But there have been plenty of films that had stunning SFX in the trailers but failed to become blockbusters because audiences weren't attached to anyone in the cast. First Class is a good example of that: beautifully directed, strong storyline, but fairly unknown cast (save Kevin Bacon) and less-than-memorable characters. The trailers were nice, but not enough to make it a blockbuster.
When an actor/actress has a strong body of work to reference audiences view a film featuring them as an endorsement of potentially quality viewing. So the more Oscar, Tony, Emmy, etc.,-winning stars you pack in a film, the more confident audiences are that they will see some strong performances. Lesser known actors can be amazing performers too (everyone has to start somewhere) but many might not risk spending $$$ to see them if they don't know them. Only strong word of mouth can bring in repeat business for a film after its opening week, but by then other competitors may be charging up the box office charts and drawing audiences away.
A strong cast is what makes the difference for many people in deciding if they're going to actually see the movie in theatres or skip it and rent it later when it comes out on DVD.
LS, its true that to have a big star as the lead helps, and a great cast would appeal to a decent part of the viewers, but there are many examples of huge success that didnt have anything to do with the cast. Here are some of the most obvious:
Spiderman 1: $821,708,551
Transformers 1: $709,709,780
None of these movies had an impressive cast, or a well known one, yet both 'first movies' were huge.
On other side, X-men franchise had a bigger and better cast, specially X2 and X3, now that they were more known, but none reached the 500m mark.
So there u have it. This just proves that the most important thing really, is the theme
of the movie and what the product
We can praise a cast all we want, but a cast will mainly appeal to critics, cinema lovers and some fans.
We could mention more expamples of first movies making more than others with bigger and better casts, but Im sure those three are more than enough to prove the point.