Although it’s tough for bean counters to take much joy in their product being massively pirated, there’s little question that popularity with the freeloaders translates to success with paying customers. That’s why it’s not much of a surprise that Avatar, the all-time highest-grossing film, is also the most pirated.
According to TorrentFreak, Avatar tops BitTorrent’s list of the top 10 most pirated movies, racking up 21 million allegedly illegal downloads.The Dark Knight follows with 19 million, and Transformers, Inception and The Hangover round out the top five.
The question is whether the expanded word-of-mouth publicity a massively pirated movie receives makes up for the amount lost in potential profit. Judging from their anti-piracy efforts, movie studios firmly believe that illegal downloading has a negative effect. But the assumption that those who download movies for free would pay for them if they couldn’t access them illegally could be quite a leap of faith.
Top 10 Most Pirated Movies of All Time [TorrentFreak]