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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This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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