As the birthplace of Hollywood and the international movie industry, it doesn’t really come as a surprise that movies have a huge impact on American culture.
After all – just look around you – even if you’re located in the furthest place on earth from Hollywood or the US, you’ll see American movie references everywhere: from action figures of popular Marvel heroes to clothing and accessories, or even just hearing a popular catchphrase, it’s easy to see the impact that American movies have had around the world.
But how about in your daily life, and American culture in general? Here are just a few things you might not have known about how movies affect and shape US culture.
Movies Might Increase Book Sales (and Vice Versa)
Ever read a great book and wanted to see it on the big screen? It turns out other people do too.
In a 2018 report, The Publishers Association discovered that movies based on books take up to 53% more worldwide at the box office than movies based on original screenplays. While there’s no current clear data that books adapted into movies increase book sales, and even some discussion that movie adaptations harm book sales (and close off the market to lesser-known authors), we’re going to take a guess that some of those movie fans flock to buy the book. And sometimes, it just so happens that the movie turns out to be better than the book (at least according to some people).
Movies Make a Social Impact
Back in 2018, the release of Crazy Rich Asians caused a stir worldwide.
Why? Because it brought a major social issue to the forefront, albeit quietly and charmingly – about the lack of Asian (and by extension, Asian-American) representation in Hollywood.
It started a debate, that soon embroiled all areas of society, including the status and treatment of women, people of color and other marginalized communities across society, and sparked a thought process regarding their representation on the screen.
This isn’t the first time a movie has caused a lasting social impact off-screen: from documentaries about scientific studies around triplets adopted to separate families, to an all-black Marvel cast, movies make people think – and speak, and change society.
Have you ever heard how Star Wars changed the face of the merchandising and toy industries? Before Star Wars was released, movie executives would wait until a movie was released, see how successful it was and only then release merchandise, such as licensed toys.
Star Wars took the opposite tactic (making George Lucas, who asked to retain the right to the merchandising, a billionaire) – they released the merchandise at the same time as the movie. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Merchandising doesn’t just stop there – it contains all of the extra (as in, non-movie) bits and bobs related to films: from clothing and accessories to online entertainment.
Movies and Hollywood have touched almost every aspect of American culture, so it doesn’t surprise us that there are many popular free spins slots offering no deposit play that are influenced by blockbuster movies.
Movies Have Inspired Other Movies
When the Twilight franchise burst onto our screens back in the early 00s, not many people thought it would have an impact on anyone other than teenagers.
Step forward E.L James: a London-based stay at home mother, who was apparently so swept away by the Twilight movies that she wrote her own fan-fiction novel, reimagining the characters in a darker setting.
The name of it? 50 Shades of Gray. It went on to sell over 70 million copies worldwide, spawn 3 movies and make James one of the highest-paid authors of all time (to the tune of around $95 million).
In fact, 50 Shades of Gray isn’t the only fan-fiction that ended up becoming popular in its own right. From a very old retelling of the Aenid in Paradise Lost, to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, fan fiction becoming bigger than the original is apparently a ‘thing’.
Movies and American Culture: Changing the Way We Live
If you’ve ever heard that “Life is like a box of chocolates”, “I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse”, or even “I’ll have what she’s having”, then you’ll know that movies change the way we speak.
Sometimes, certain phrases, situations and characters just capture out imagination – and we find ourselves repeating what we hear on screen. And so do the other people around us.
In every area of our lives, movies touch our languages, hearts and even our fortunes (as E.L Jams and George Lucas can testify). The impact they have on American – and international – culture is massive.