from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A booth, as in a theater or stadium, where tickets are sold.
  • n. The drawing power of a theatrical entertainment or of a performer; popular appeal.
  • n. A factor influencing this power: Notoriety is usually good box office.
  • n. Total attendance for an entertainment; turnout.
  • n. The amount of money received from ticket sales for an entertainment.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A place where tickets are sold in a theatre/theater or cinema
  • n. the total amount of money paid by people worldwide to watch a movie at cinemas/movie theaters.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. total admission receipts for an entertainment
  • n. the office where tickets of admission are sold


So named because it was originally an office for the booking of boxes in a theater.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
1786, presumably from sales of boxes, box seats ("separated private seating").[2][3] Sense of “total sales” from 1904.[1] (Wiktionary)


  • “You may pick up the tickets at six from the box office at the Teatr Wielki,” she said, sounding like someone reading from a phrase book, and before I could reply, she hung up.

    Dreaming in French

  • The distributor-exhibitor relationship is favorable to exhibitors, who receive on average 70% of box office receipts compared with an average of 50% in the United States.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • “FSS” stands for Friday-Saturday-Sunday; “FSS WK #” refers to number of weekends in release; “FSS RUNS” refers to the number of theatres; “AVG” divides the weekend box office by the number of theatres; “CUM” means cumulative.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • Marketability does not measure the box office potential of a movie, but it does provide a key piece of the puzzle about how the movie might fare in the marketplace.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • Perhaps the only way that such a speculation could be traded on today is in the rare events, once every five or ten years, when a film produces Titanic-sized $1.8 billion worldwide box office performance.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • The deal for Y Tu Mamá También was a standard distribution deal, structured with an advance to the producers of under $1 million; IFC would take a 30% distribution fee, and bonuses were given to the producers at U.S. box office thresholds of $7.5 million and $10 million.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • Hong Kong has become a theatrical-only territory, dominated by local films and the majors, and neither seem very happy with current box office results.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • Our company then reports the box office grosses to Nielsen EDI a division of AC Nielsen, which releases the figures to the studios and the press.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • See also multiplexes theatrical exhibitors aggregate dealsand box office grosseschecking companiescompetition from televisionconcession salesconventions forcosts ofand distributorsfilm bookingand floor percentagein the global markethouse allowanceindependent exhibitorsand independent movieslease obligationsluxury-style venuesmarketing and advertising“90/10” film rental deal with distributornut overheadoverseasprofit marginsprojection technology, currentprojection technology, digitalprojection technology, history ofand real-estate developmentregional managementrolling stock advertisingand screen countstaff fortheatre operationsticketing technologytop fifty marketszones of cities, competing forSee also box office grosses; distributors

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition

  • Residuals are those industrywide payments a studio owes to guild members for specific posttheatrical exploitation of the picture; off-the-top deductions include taxes, insurance, MPAA dues, box office checking and collections.

    The Movie Business Book, Third Edition


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