(Update - February 18, 2017)
Added Jurassic World to the showdown.
IntroductionTwo movies adapted from popular novels that kicked off film franchises with huge hits directed by Steven Spielberg, before being taken over by other directors and rammed into the ground. Which franchise is more successful overall?
Commercial Success Score is based on adjusted box office numbers, calculated using domestic box office dollars, average ticket price in release year, U.S. population, and tickets purchased per capita.
Jurassic leads both total adjusted box office and average adjusted box office, headed by Jurassic Park ($780M) and Jurassic World ($577M). The original Jaws is no slouch however, leading all films in both franchises with $1.2B, a figure that almost matches those two big Jurassic hits combined.
Edge: Jurassic Park
Critical Success Score is based on critics' scores as aggregated on Rotten Tomatoes and user scores from IMDB.
Again the original Jaws leads the pack with a 91% rating; it is the best reviewed film from both franchises, but its three sequels average only 30% and drag down the overall score. Jurassic Park holds the second highest score from both franchises, and its three sequels average 55%, making this category a relatively easy win.
Edge: Jurassic Park
Miscellaneous Score is based on Academy award nominations and wins, number of films, appearances on AFI lists, and inclusions in the National Film Registry.
Both franchises have received 4 Oscar nominations and 3 wins, but it is Jaws's nomination for best picture that gives it an edge over Jurassic. Jaws is listed on a couple AFI lists and is included in the National Film Registry. Jurassic Park is included on one AFI list. The original Jaws is a true classic, a Hollywood game-changer, the stuff of movie legend. The first Jurassic Park is a respected and loved thriller, well-known for its groundbreaking computer-generated dinosaurs.
You might think the strength of the original Jaws would be enough to carry the franchise to victory, but the Jaws sequels were simply too terrible. On the whole, Jurassic Park has a more successful body of work.
Winner: Jurassic Park