Despite the best efforts of Joe Biden’s anti-piracy task force—which spent most of 2011 debating cool jacket designs and what its theme song should be—the Internet once more spent the year looting and pilfering all the movies it could find. But there’s some good news being passed around their clubhouse to go along with that recent public flogging of a scapegoat: Illegal downloads of studio releases actually saw a dramatic decrease this year, dropping from the record-high, 16 million plus copies of Avatar that were pirated in 2010 to the slightly less wild-in-the-streets theft of Fast Five, which only 9.2 million people stole in an elaborate heist that they then swore to everyone was really well-constructed and fun, so shut up.
Of course, as TorrentFreak (the paper of record for torrent freaks) points out, some of this decline could be explained by more users opting for legal alternatives. But it’s also just as likely that pirating has become so rampant that in 2011, it was simply spread out over more films than ever. That diversity is certainly suggested by the rest of the list which, while still dominated by the sci-fi and action genres you might expect, also includes a couple of titles that suggest either the average web pirate has grown more discerning, or that your mom stole The King’s Speech last year. (And in that case, she should keep an ear out for that telltale sound heralding the approach of the Biden Squad—maybe Edgar Winter’s “Frankenstein,” if everyone can finally just agree that it’s totally boss.)
Here’s the complete list of the year’s most pirated films with their comparative box-office grosses, to be used in all of Zack Snyder’s future arguments for why Sucker Punch obviously should have been a hit. [via Cinema Blend]
1. Fast Five 9,260,000 / $626,137,675
2. The Hangover Part II 8,840,000 / $581,464,305
3. Thor 8,330,000 / $449,326,618
4. Source Code 7,910,000 / $123,278,618
5. I Am Number Four 7,670,000 / $144,500,437
6. Sucker Punch 7,200,000 / $89,792,502
7. 127 Hours 6,910,000 / $60,738,797
8. Rango 6,480,000 / $245,155,348
9. The King’s Speech 6,250,000 / $414,211,549
10. Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Part 2 6,030,000 / $1,328,111,219
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