Watching The King’s Speech yesterday, I wondered how the various major movies genres and rating levels fare against one another at the box office.
Using data from The Numbers, a site that tracks Hollywood sales and stars, and I filtered the list down to the eight most common genres — and only those films that grossed more than $1 million. I uploaded the data to Many Eyes, a free site owned by IBM, to create a tree map, a visualization method that displays hierarchical data into easily digestible categories.
Here’s the view by genre. Clearly, moviegoers like adventure, followed by comedy, drama and action. The shade of each category changes slightly in subcategories based on the rating (notice the bright pink box at the bottom for Toy Story, the year’s highest-grossing movie but also one of only two G-rated adventures):
Right click inside a category and drill down to see more detail. Here we look at the adventures alone:
Or drill down farther into the PG-rated movies, and hover over each title to see its gross sales:
Of course, you also have the ability to change the entire view by changing the “size” drop-down menu at the bottom of the map, or by sliding the hierarchical categories (genre, title, rating) at the top. Check out the map.
Tree maps take experimentation to understand, but they can be powerful tools. If you like this subject, also check out Terrab Erk’s cool stack graph comparing movie genres back to the 1880s.