This week, The Equalizer 3 hits theaters, and it got us thinking about just how much time has passed and what has changed since the first movie came out in 2014. While that’s slightly under a decade and doesn’t at first appear to be that much time, it’s still fun to look back and see just how many things have changed.
1. Barack Obama Was Still The U.S. President
Even though he still looms large, it’s important to note that it was a whole two presidents ago when the first Equalizer movie hit theaters. At the time, President Obama was halfway through his second term. The world has certainly changed since he left the White House.
2. The Top Movie That Year Was Transformers: Age of Extinction
Some of you might be thinking, “Wait, Guardians of the Galaxy wasn’t the biggest box office draw that year?” If you were to focus on the domestic box office haul, you’d be right – Guardians of the Galaxy was the biggest movie at the domestic box office in 2014. But remember, this was the first movie before anyone knew that a sentient tree and a talking raccoon would be as big or as beloved as they are now. Thus, in 2014, a more familiar franchise took the top spot, globally. Transformers: Age of Extinction led all movies around the world with $1.1 billion.
3. The Top Song The Week The Equalizer Came Out Was “All About That Bass” by Meghan Trainor
To be honest, we’d forgotten that song even existed. It seemed to be everywhere that summer and fall. Meghan Trainor’s breakout hit was #1 on the charts for eight weeks straight. It was the longest run for a female artist in 2014. To be honest, the chorus might still be stuck in our heads.
4. The Winter Olympics Happened In Sochi & The World Cup in Brazil
2014 was a big year for sports, with both the Winter Olympics and the World Cup happening on opposite ends of the world. The XXII Olympic Winter Games were held in Sochi, Russia. Eighty-eight countries competed in the event that ran from February 7-23, 2014. There were a lot of great moments, such as the fact that more sports were allowed in to the competition than at any point in history, and it was the most expensive Olympics ever. However, the entire thing ended up being overshadowed by Russia’s doping scandal.
Meanwhile, the 2014 FIFA World Cup was held in Brazil from June 12 to July 14. Before that, Brazil hadn’t hosted the WC since 1950. 32 teams competed, and it was Germany that defeated Argentina in the final to win its first World Cup in the Americas, and its first since the Berlin Wall fell.
5. “Gangnam Style” Forced YouTube To Upgrade Its Computing Power
At the tail end of the year, a viral song so big forced YouTube to change the way it did things. In 2014, YouTube was still running on 32-bit computing. But when PSY’s “Gangnam Style” hit YouTube and the airwaves, the song hit 2,147,483,647 views, the highest number possible in a 32-bit integer limit. The song was so huge, YouTube had to change to a 64-bit integer to allow the view count to keep going. At a current 4.8 billion, the view count on the video has more than doubled since.
6. A Robot Landed On An Actual Comet
2014 was the year humanity led by the European Space Agency piloted a robot on a rocket and landed it on a comet hurtling through space. After a journey of 10 years, the Philae, a robotic lander, launched from the Rosetta spaceship and latched onto the comet. Though it unfortunately ran out of battery faster than anticipated, it was still able to transmit photos and data back to the ESA and the world.
7. 12 Years A Slave Won The Best Picture Oscar That Year
Steve McQueen’s brilliant and brutal 12 Years a Slave, starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, took home the biggest prize at the Oscars that year, and deservedly so. The movie was a masterpiece of the human condition and the will to survive, still sparking conversation a decade later.
Plus, we also got the greatest Academy Awards selfie ever taken that year.
8. Jay Leno Retired From Hosting The Tonight Show After 22 Years
After a long reign, late-night talk show host Jay Leno finally decided to step back from hosting The Tonight Show after more than two decades. The aftermath of his leaving was chaotic and handled badly. Conan O’Brien took over after his departure. Six months later, NBC announced that Leno would be hosting a new talk show that would air just before Conan’s Tonight Show. When numbers weren’t good, NBC opted to move Leno back to his old time slot without notifying O’Brien of the change, giving him two options: move his show to midnight or leave. He opted to leave and Leno returned, but was never the same. Eventually, Leno’s permanent successor to The Tonight Show was named Jimmy Fallon, who has been hosting it ever since.
9. Betty White Was Awarded The Guinness World Record For Longest TV Career for an Entertainer (Female)
Beloved late icon Betty White earned a well-deserved place in the Guinness Book of World Records in 2014. She earned the title of having had the longest TV career for any female entertainer – but it’s the longest of any entertainer, period. Betty White, who continued to act until her death in 2021, had her first role in 1939, so far back that the medium of television was still in development. As an actress, producer, and comedian, the national treasure continued to entertain us for 82 years.
10. Adult Swim’s Too Many Cooks Came Out & Confused All Of Us
Remember this? We bet your nightmares do!