Movies with strong female characters – including Catching Fire – made more money at the U.S. box office in 2013, according to a new study. TIME breaks down the analysis:
Vocativ analyzed the highest grossing movies of 2013 to see if they passed the Bechdel Test — whether two or more women have a conversation in a film about something other than a man. (You’d be surprised how few movies pass this test.)
Here’s what they found: out of 50 total movies analyzed, 17 (36 percent) passed the test. Another seven technically passed the test but have an asterisk next to them thanks to “dubious” dialogue (i.e. very limited dialogue about things other than men).
But those movies that did pass the test had significantly higher domestic box office numbers than the movies that didn’t pass. Featuring strong female characters in a film earned studios billions of extra dollars.
Click on the Vocativ infographic to the right to see which movies passed and failed the test, and their domestic grosses.
Catching Fire obviously passes the Bechdel Test, and about a week ago, it became the highest grossing film of 2013 in the U.S., grossing $409.4 million to top Iron Man 3 (it’s now made $417.9 million).
This was the first time a female-led film was the highest earner of the year in a LONG time – BuzzFeed dates it back to The Exorcist in 1973 or maybe Funny Girl in 1968, whereas TIME says the last time was 1965 with The Sound of Music. Either way, Jennifer Lawrence (and of course Suzanne Collins) have proven that a female-led film can be super successful at the box office.