With studios shelling out huge bucks to push their films on Oscar voters—Frost/Nixon probably dropped hundreds of thousands for a few days of spreads in the Hollywood papers—could such ad blitzes actually pay off? The answer is yes: A best picture nomination is worth at least $6.7 million, write Chadwick Matlin and Chris Wilson for Slate's Big Money blog.
The crucial calculus depends on stirring up renewed buzz, adding (or returning) the nominated film to more theaters, and sending stars on another round of talk show appearances. "A best picture nomination is the equivalent of cinematic Viagra," Matlin and Wilson write. "If your box office stamina lasts longer than four weeks, please consult a physician."