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Box office soars! So get ready for more slump-talk!

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9457__pirates_lRemember all that slump talk last year? Where everyone was trying to figure out what was causing the dip in box office, with culprits ranging from the price of gas to declining movie quality to piracy?

Well, that’s all over now… thanks largely to, uh, piracy. Box office is surging compared to last year. And that’s exactly why the time has come to start discussing the next slump.

Yup, this year’s Pirates-ized movie revenues practically guarantee another slump next year, if only because Wall Street tends to subsist on year-to-year comparisons. Set a record one year? Get slammed the next. That’s how it works. But the Hollywood Reporter wonders if Pirates‘ ripples will be felt even more widely: Will studios now invest more heavily in $300 million tentpoles, driving risk through the roof? Or will they look at the split decisions (Superman Returns) and the disappointments (M:I-3) and come to a more conservative conclusion?

Or will Spider-Man 3 make this entire discussion moot?

Doomsay below.

addCredit(“Pirates of the Caribbean: Peter Mountain”)