1946 Top Box Office Movies

1946 22222

James Stewart in It’s A Wonderful Life (1946)

This page looks at the 1946 Top Box Office Movies. World War II ended in 1945 and as the soldiers returned home…they did two things….one they made lots of babies and two they went to lots of movies. 1946 was the peak of people going to movies. In 1946 an average of 90 million admissions were sold on a weekly basis. That 90 million represented almost 60% of the population of the United States. As a comparison, we can look at our current movie going habits…weekly admissions are now roughly 27 million and represent 10% of the population.

This page will look at the biggest box office hits during the biggest box office year ever.I thought when I came up with this idea of doing the biggest box office hits of 1946 that it would be an easy movie page to write. I already had the January 8th 1947 Variety magazine that listed the Top 60 hits of the year so I figured I could knock out the movie page in a few hours….boy was I wrong. The first thing I noticed was that many of top box office hits of 1946 were actually made in 1945.

The second thing I noticed was many of the top box office hits of 1947 were really made in 1946. The third thing I noticed was many of the Oscar® nominated and Oscar® winning films did not make the Variety Top Box Office charts. The final thing I noticed was an issue with foreign films…it sometimes took years after a foreign movie was made for it to make it to North America….the best example of this is Henry V…it was made in 1944 yet it took 2 years to reach North America.

Here is how I came up with the 113 movies on the Ultimate Movie Rankings list…..any box office hit on the Variety lists made in 1946 or was released for the first time in 1946 in North America made the list , and any movie that got an Oscar® nomination or Oscar® win for the 1946 year made the list.

Harold Russell in The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)

Harold Russell in The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)

1946 Top Box Office Movies Can Be Ranked 6 Ways In This Table

The really cool thing about this table is that it is “user-sortable”. Rank the movies anyway you want.

  • Sort by the stars of the 1946 Top Box Office Movies.
  • Sort 1946 Top Box Office Movies by domestic adjusted box office grosses using current movie ticket cost (in millions)
  • Sort 1946 Top Box Office Movies by domestic yearly box office rank
  • Sort 1946 Top Box Office Movies how they were received by critics and audiences.  60% rating or higher should indicate a good movie.
  • Sort by how many Oscar® nominations and how many Oscar® wins each 1946 Top Box Office Movies received.
  • Sort 1946 Top Box Office Movies by Ultimate Movie Rankings (UMR) Score puts box office, reviews and awards into a mathematical equation and gives each movie a score.

Possibly Interesting Facts About 1946 Top Box Office Movies

1. The five films that received Oscar® nominations for Best Picture were: The Best Years of Our Lives, Henry V, It’s A Wonderful Life, The Razor’s Edge and The Yearling….the winner was The Best Years of Our Lives.

2. Disabled veteran Harold Russell actually won two Oscars® for his performance in The Best Years of Our Lives….one for Best Supporting Actor and a Special Award for bringing hope and courage to his fellow veterans.

3. Other Oscar® acting winners in 1946 were Frederic March as Best Actor for Best Years of Our Lives, Olivia de Havilland as Best Actress for To Each His Own, and Anne Baxter as Best Supporting Actress for The Razor’s Edge.

4. The biggest Oscar® snubs in 1946? I vote three movies/performances…..#1 Alfred Hitchcock’s Notorious should have either gotten a Best Picture nomination or a Best Director nomination. 2.Henry Fonda in My Darling Clementine gave one of his greatest screen performances in that movie…… and finally 3. Myrna Loy in The Best Years of Our Lives. During Loy’s long and successful career she never got an Oscar® nomination…this would have been the perfect movie to right that wrong.

5. According to Variety the Top Box Office Movie Stars of 1946 were: #1 Bing Crosby, #2 Ingrid Bergman. #3 Fred Astaire, #4 Dorothy Lamour and #5 Gregory Peck.

6. Actors/actresses that made their screen debuts in 1946: Burt Lancaster (The Killers #28), Kirk Douglas (The Strange Loves of Martha Ivers #22), Alec Guinness (Great Expectations #36), Dean Martin and Natalie Wood.

7. Two famous entertainers who passed away in 1946….W.C. Fields and H.G. Wells.

8. Currently a successful box office mark to cross is 100 million... in 2011 thirty movies crossed $100 million, in 2012 thirty-one movies crossed that mark, in 2013 thirty-five got there and in 2014 thirty-three did it. In 1946…when looking at adjusted box office numbers…..an incredible 65 movies would have crossed $100 million.

Want more 1946 Box Office Stats?  How About Adjusted Worldwide Grosses on 36 1946 Movies?

  1. Best Years of Our Lives, The (1946) $859.60 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  2. Big Sleep, The (1946) $316.30 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  3. Blue Skies (1946) $548.00 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  4. Canyon Passage (1946) $266.80 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  5. Deception (1946) $211.80 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  6. Devotion (1946) $193.40 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  7. Easy to Wed (1946) $367.20 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  8. Faithful In My Fashion (1946) $40.60 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  9. From This Day Forward (1946) $152.10 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  10. Harvey Girls, The (1946) $338.10 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  11. Heartbeat (1946) $152.40 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  12. Holiday in Mexico (1946) $372.20 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  13. Hoodlum Saint, The (1946) $102.30 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  14. Humoresque (1946) $220.50 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  15. Kid From Brooklyn, The (1946) $356.80 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  16. Love Laughs At Andy Hardy (1946) $152.60 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  17. My Reputation (1946) $260.60 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  18. Never Say Goodbye (1946) $169.30 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  19. Night and Day (1946) $418.40 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  20. Night In Paradise, A (1946) $143.40 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  21. No Leave, No Love (1946) $246.20 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  22. Nobody Lives Forever (1946) $181.30 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  23. Notorious (1946) $465.70 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  24. Postman Always Rings Twice, The (1946) $334.40 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  25. Saratoga Trunk (1946) $508.10 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  26. Secret Heart, The (1946) $253.70 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  27. Stolen Life, A (1946) $311.70 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  28. Tarzan and the Leopard Woman (1946) $157.70 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  29. Three Strangers (1946) $107.20 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  30. Till The Clouds Roll By (1946) $439.00 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  31. Two Sisters From Boston (1946) $290.00 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  32. Two Smart People (1946) $77.70 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  33. Undercurrent (1946) $276.10 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  34. Verdict, The (1946) $103.60 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  35. Without Reservations (1946) $224.00 million in adjusted worldwide gross
  36. Ziegfeld Follies (1946) $347.30 million in adjusted worldwide gross

My Yearly Review Pages

Academy Award® and Oscar® are the registered trademarks of the Academy of Motion Arts and Sciences.

If you do a comment….please ignore the email address and website section.

531 total views, 0 views today

(Visited 58,030 times)

74 thoughts on “1946 Top Box Office Movies

  1. The Movie “California” with Barbara Stanywick. I show it as being released on Jan 14, 1947 and cannot find a source where it was released in 1946, not even overseas. I have done research, and I just don’t see anything before 1947. Would you be able to let me know on this? Thank you

    1. Hey Chris…..it looks like you are 100% correct…..I will have to fix that when I get back home. Putting it in my notebook of things to fix. Your “eagle eye” is greatly appreciated. There is no sarcasm in that at all. When you make as many mistakes like we have…..we have to embrace the notices we get about our errors. Thanks again…and sorry it took so long to comment back…somehow this comment made it past us.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.