RANKED: The 10 most successful comedy movies of all time

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“Ghostbusters.”
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Columbia Pictures

Comedies are not historically huge box-office earners, but some strike a chord with so many different people that audiences go watch them again and again.

So far this year, the Kevin Hart/Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson comedy “Central Intelligence” is tops in the genre, having taken in over $110 million at the domestic box office.

But the all-female “Ghostbusters” reboot kicks off its theatrical run on Friday with the hopes of rising up the ranks to catch Hart and Johnson.

Both, however, have a lot more work to do to catch these all-time great comedies – especially Bill Murray’s original supernatural smash.

Here are the 10 highest-grossing comedy movies ever, adjusted for inflation to keep things on an even playing field.

Note: We did not count animated or superhero movies in our selection because, while they lean heavily on comedic writing, they are categories all their own and tend to earn significantly more. All figures below are from Box Office Mojo.


10. “Mrs. Doubtfire” (1993) — $452 million (adjusted)

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YouTube

$219.1 million – unadjusted

It’s hard to imagine anyone other than Robin Williams playing the role of a father who decides to dress up as an elderly female housekeeper to spend more time with his children while in the midst of a nasty divorce.


9. “M*A*S*H” (1970) — $460.6 million (adjusted)

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20th Century Fox

$81.6 million – unadjusted

Before the hit TV show, it was a hit movie from director Robert Altman, whose style of having all the characters talking over one another laid the groundwork for a unique brand of comedy.


8. “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” (1963) — $462.2 million (adjusted)

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United Artists

$46.3 million – unadjusted

The plot isn’t much – a whole bunch of people racing for buried treasure – but what drew audiences to the theaters is that every comic who was huge up to the ’60s was cast or had a cameo in the movie – even The Three Stooges!


7. “Smokey and the Bandit” (1977) — $487.6 million (adjusted)

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Universal Pictures

$126.7 million – unadjusted

Burt Reynolds became the biggest star in the world after this good-ol’-boy movie about a hotshot driver trying to get beer across the Georgia border became a huge hit.


6. “Tootsie” (1982) — $488.2 million (adjusted)

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Columbia Pictures

$177.2 million – unadjusted

Dustin Hoffman gives an Oscar-nominated performance playing a struggling actor who can find work only by dressing up as a woman.


5. “Nation Lampoon’s Animal House” (1978) — $513.8 million (adjusted)

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Universal

$141.6 million – unadjusted

College life would never be the same after John Belushi showed the antics of the Delta Tau Chi fraternity in John Landis’ classic comedy.


4. “Blazing Saddles” (1974) — $542.5 million (adjusted)

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Warner Bros.

$119.6 million – unadjusted

Another classic that never gets old is Mel Brooks’ Western comedy. For better or worse, this is the movie that paved the way for the gross-out genre.


3. “Beverly Hills Cop” (1984) — $576.1 million (adjusted)

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Paramount

$234.7 million – unadjusted

After being a huge star on “Saturday Night Live,” Eddie Murphy’s first leading-man movie was this action-comedy that made him one of the biggest stars of the 1980s.


2. “Home Alone” (1990) — $581.1 million (adjusted)

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Movieclips/YouTube

$285.7 million – unadjusted

Macaulay Culkin will forever be known as the kid who grows up fast after his family accidentally leaves him behind while on their Christmas vacation, in this Chris Columbus classic written by John Hughes.


1. “Ghostbusters” (1984) — $610.6 million (adjusted)

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Columbia Pictures

$242.2 million – unadjusted

The original “Ghostbusters” is still tops in comedy movies. The four bumbling busters, led by the antics of Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd, save New York City from the supernatural and have jokes that still kill to this day.