If you had to guess what the most rented movie was last year, what would you say? You might think back to all the biggest movies of 2017, like IT, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Beauty and the Beast or Thor: Ragnarok. But all of those guesses would miss the mark. The truth is that the most rented movie last year was a film that didn't even come out last year. It was released in 2016, and that is the Ben Affleck action movie, The Accountant.
Did you see that one coming? Indeed, the most rented movie last year wasn't some huge blockbuster comic book movie or sequel to a name property, but an action film starring Ben Affleck as a deadly math nerd. Coming in second behind The Accountant on the rental front was Moana, and then Wonder Woman. These stats come from The Hollywood Reporter, citing the MPAA's annual report, which has for the first time included home entertainment. These rental stats are based on digital rentals of movies, not physical rentals. That's not terribly surprising since most people would have to do some serious searching to find a video rental store, and digital is now the preferred rental format. So these are rentals you might make through your cable provider or a service like Amazon or Vudu. It is also worth noting that these stats reflect paid rentals, and not films included as streaming options, like on Netflix.
These top three rentals are interesting, and there are probably a lot of factors that helped them find their way to the top of the list. It's not terribly surprising that a 2016 release topped the charts since 2017 films wouldn't have been available for rental the whole year. The Accountant was released in late 2016, so it was probably available for the majority of last year to rent digitally and had more time to rack up the numbers. Director Gavin O'Connor's movie made $155.1 million at the worldwide box office and was a relative hit given its budget. However there were many people who didn't see it in theaters. The Accountant is definitely the exact kind of movie you rent; a fun action movie that you didn't see in theaters and don't want to buy outright, but still want to watch during a night in.
The musical Moana also likely benefitted from being released the year before, and as a kids movie was probably something parents could quickly rent and throw on to entertain the little ones. Wonder Woman was a huge box office success, and as a June theatrical release, it wasn't even available on digital until the end of August. So it had less than half the year, and Patty Jenkins' brilliant film still drew in enough audiences to claim a bronze medal in the movie rental race.
We already know that Warner Bros. is moving ahead with The Accountant 2, with Ben Affleck set to return, and I imagine the performance of the first film on digital over the past year has only affirmed that this is a good decision. Check out our guide to see all the Blu-ray, DVD and digital releases you can check out this month, and for all the latest in move news, stay tuned to CinemaBlend.