The Best Picture Oscar rarely goes to the movie that makes the most money

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An analysis of 20 years of Oscars data shows some clear trends in the types of movies the Academy chooses for Best Picture. MarketWatch analyzed domestic and international box office figures and estimated budgets data from Box Office Mojo and The Numbers, and found that the movies with the biggest budgets rarely win the Oscar for Best Picture.

Since “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King,” no Best Picture winner has come close to grossing $378 million domestically. “Avatar” had a chance to break that record at the 2010 awards, but lost to “The Hurt Locker,” which made almost 45 times less at the domestic box office.

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