Grand Theft Auto IV Makes More Money Than Anything Ever

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mojo-photo-grandtheft.jpgWell, almost. Billboard magazine reports that first-week sales for the latest installment in the “Grand Theft Auto” videogame series has outperformed even the most optimistic of predictions, making more than $500 million in sales the first week. Billboard says that’s 6 million copies, but it’s $60 on Amazon, and that works out to $360 million, but who knows how they count these things. Either way, it’s a new first-week record for a game, smashing the previous high mark set by “Halo 3” of $300 million.

For comparison’s sake, let’s just take a look at some other cultural products and institutions and their associated monetary figures, after the jump:

  • Net worth of Martha Stewart, the 377th richest American: $970 million (Forbes.com)
  • “Star Wars,” total gross: $460,998,007 (Box Office Mojo)
  • GDP of Vanuatu, 2007: $455 million (IMF via Wikipedia)
  • McDonalds, weekly profit, worldwide: $437 million (Hoovers)
  • Michael Jackson’s Thriller, all-time US sales gross estimate: $270 million (RIAA)
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, biggest selling book of 2007, gross US sales in 2007: $270 million (Publisher’s Weekly)
  • The Police reunion tour, 2007 total gross: $212 million (Billboard)
  • Daughtry’s Daughtry, biggest selling album of 2007, gross sales in 2007: $30 million (Billboard)

Lesson: by talking about music, movies and books here on the Riff, we’re clearly missing the boat. Too bad the last videogame I played was probably “Dig Dug” at the local Pizza Hut in 1984.

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FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

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