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Find Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Movies on the Internet

Find Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Movies on the Internet Movie Database


Some of the most fun Popular websites began as a hobby or labor of love by their creators. Craigslist began as a way for its creator to help his friends when he was a new resident of the Bay Area, and grew to become an internationally recognized classified ad service. Another hobby that grew into a major website in IMDb, the Internet Movie Database.


Part of the reason that IMDb is a labor of love is that the project started before there was any commercial uses developed for the 'web. Founder Col Needham, a Hewlett Packard engineer and film buff in Manchester, UK, began a list called “Those Eyes”, listing actresses with notably beautiful eyes. In 1990 Needham posted his list on USENET, and soon friends began contributing to the list and adding lists of their own; “Actors”, “Directors”, “Actresses”. At first the list was restricted to those actually working, but soon retired actors and directors began to be added. This was followed by a formal “Dead Actors and Actresses” list. By the end of 1990, there were nearly 10,000 movies and television listed.

By 1992 the lists included several categories of film makers as well as trivia, biographies, and film summaries; users began to rate movies, and a search function for the list was created. By the end of the year the list was moved to the World Wide Web under the name “Cardiff Internet Movie Database”, named for the servers at Cardiff University where the lists were stored. Features were added to make the list easier to reference and contribute to.

The big break came when Jeff Bezos, CEO of, struck a deal with Needham to buy outright and make it an independent subsidiary of Amazon. Bezos felt that IMDb would be a good tool to help Amazon to sell VHS Tapes and DVDs. While this is certainly true, remains very subtle in sending its users to Amazon.

In addition to its affiliation with Amazon, IMDb makes money by selling movie photos, advertising and licensing, selling movie tickets, and offering a premium IMDbPro service that is valuable to scholars and Movie Industry Professionals.

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