GTA V Becomes Highest Grossing Media Title of all Time; Beating Star Wars, Avatar & More

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Apr 9
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Take Two Interactive’s GTA V has become the most profitable media product since all time, thereby beating movies like Star Wars and Avatar.

Grand Theft Auto V, from developer Rockstar Games, launched in 2013 and has since sold around 90 million copies across all platforms, and grossing in roughly 6 billion USD. For reference, movie hits such as Star Wars and Gone in the Wind harvested in more than 3 billion USD.

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“Far above the success of blockbuster movies like “Star Wars” or “Gone With The Wind,” which both collected more than $3 billion, adjusted for inflation”, website MarketWatch writes. “Even taking into account DVD and streaming sales would not put the biggest movie blockbusters in GTA V’s neighborhood, said Cowen analyst Doug Creutz, estimating those sales might add up to $1 billion to the films’ totals.”

“I think it’s a wild outlier,” the analyst told MarketWatch in an interview over the phone. “I think maybe with the exception something Nintendo has made—Mario Brothers—but aside from that there’s never been a console game that’s sold so many units.”

Please note that Creutz refers to the Mario game franchise as a whole, but not a single Mario game has managed to harvest 6 billion dollars on its own.

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According to MarketWatch, the closest competitor for GTA V would be Activision’s Call of Duty series, but sales for this insanely popular shooting franchise fade in the light of GTA V’s sales.

Back in July of last year, Take Two’s CEO Straus Zelnick talked about the insane success of the game, and his expectations for the upcoming Red Dead Redemption 2, which are said to be high, but not on the same level as GTA V.

I don’t make assumptions like that,” Zelnick told Gamesindustry.biz. “What the team is doing is trying to make the best possible game they can, and if they succeed… Look, the reason, in my opinion, why GTA V has sold 80m units, and GTA Online had another record year 3-and-a-half years since its release, is because it stands alone in the generation. In every prior generation, there have been other titles that have clustered around GTA from a quality point-of-view. That’s clearly not the case now. If you are over 17 and you have a new generation console, you have GTA. Otherwise we wouldn’t have shipped 80m units. Can any other title achieve that? It seems unlikely. Do we have incredibly high hopes for Red Dead? We do. But we are not putting it in the context of GTA.”

GTA V and its online component, GTA Online, are available now for PC and consoles.

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