(Editor's note: Kent Harrington, a former senior CIA analyst, served as National Intelligence Officer for East Asia, Chief of Station in Asia and the CIA's Director of Public Affairs.) Big data, artificial intelligence and amped-up computing are revolutionizing forecasting of all sorts, but for movie industry analysts a subscription to the trade press still works just fine. Take Black Panther, the latest smash hit, and the last few years of front-page stories about big box office receipts from Dark Knight, Avengers and Wonder Woman. You'd be smoking something not to predict a bright future for superheroes and full employment for the software coders whose special effects deliver their fantastical feats.
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