Two articles, two views about the future of the movie industry:
The summer is when movie theaters are expected to see lots of seats filled with people hankering for a big, blowy-uppy blockbuster movie with characters they know doing things they’ve never seen before. Or maybe just more elaborate versions of things they might have done before. And people came to see some of these movies in 3D this year, and it resulted in higher revenue for theaters. But here’s the catch to that: since 3D tickets cost more, the higher revenues were not a result of people buying more tickets, it was just less people buying more expensive tickets. Because those “higher revenues” were higher by less than one percent. The summer of 2011 marked the worst summer for theaters since 1997, with the second lowest number of tickets sold in 14 years. Bummer.
Forgive me for a little anti-curmudgeon curmudgeoning, but the numbers cited in this Mary Sue post by Jamie Frevele (and the post itself, to some extent) set off all my neurons. We see these dire warnings of the demise of the movie industry at fairly regular intervals throughout the year, every year, and they’re always the same. Movies aren’t as good, it’s too expensive to go to the movies, popcorn costs a million dollars – no wonder no one wants to go! But how much of this holds up to scrutiny?
I submit: not much.
Hat tip to Andrew Sullivan, The Daily Dish: The Future of the Silver Screen.