The Two Favorite Colors of Film Trailers Everywhere

January 15, 2013 | Andy Cush

Edmund Helmert, the creative mind behind BoxOfficeQuant, can be thought of as a kind of Nate Silver for the film industry–researching, plotting, and analyzing data about movies, with hopes to “report on the financial state of the industry and attempt to predict its future.”

For his latest project, he used this beautiful circular histogram to graph the most prominent colors in film trailers (sound familiar, sort of?). The results shouldn’t be surprising, I guess, if you share Helmert’s unique mix of cinephilia and number-crunchines: the oranges and blues in the graph have long been thought to be the industry’s favorite colors.

Helmert explains:

After sampling, I created the chart below to represent the distribution of those colors, so we could truly see how often they appear. I’ve weighted each pixel by the length of the trailer (so longer trailers aren’t overrepresented), and by the value and saturation (because even if the Hue is red, if the value is so low that it’s nearly black, then we don’t perceive much red being there), and so each bar below represents the prevalence of that bar’s color.