After two years of disruption, movie theatre executives have cause to be positive about the future of their industry.
Hollywood studios expressed their commitment to theatrical releases and emphasised their slates of future films at last week’s exhibition conference CinemaCon.
A new survey of 2,200 US adults published on Wednesday by the insights firm Morning Consult found that comfort with going to the movies has risen to 62 percent, a pandemic-era high.
However, theatres are not yet out of the woods. The box office in the United States is still much below pre-pandemic levels (but is up 338 percent compared to this time last year, when theatrical releases were largely nonexistent, according to Comscore).
According to another Morning Consult survey released on Friday, US adults still favour “day-and-date” releases — that is, movies that are released simultaneously in cinemas and on streaming sites (industry leaders would push back that moviegoers, as opposed to general audiences, would prefer exclusive theatrical releases).
Hollywood studios experimented with day-and-date techniques throughout the pandemic. Warner Bros. simultaneously released their complete 2021 slate in theatres and on HBO Max. Other studios, such as Disney, did the same with some hits, such as “Black Widow.”
During the pandemic, audiences were “taught” to know when a movie would be ready to stream, according to a studio executive who asked to remain unnamed.
According to John Fithian, CEO of the National Association of Theatre Owners, day-and-date is “dead as a genuine business model.”
Fithian told Insider, “That doesn’t mean there won’t be distributors that dabble with that concept on occasion.” “However, based on what we’ve heard from the studios, they’re concentrating on their slate of films aimed at theatres with an exclusive window.”
The next several months will reveal if the theatrical sector can overcome these challenges and capitalise on the year’s early momentum. The summer movie season is jam-packed with possible surprise hits like Warner Bros.’ “Elvis” and want tobe blockbusters like Universal’s “Jurassic World: Dominion.”
“It’s difficult to say things will return to “normal” across the board, but this summer appears to be the closest the industry has come since 2019,” said Shawn Robbins, Box Office Pro’s chief analyst.
“Jurassic World: Dominion” will be released on June 10th.
According to Bruce Nash, the founder of the box-office analysis website The Numbers, “Jurassic World: Dominion” will be the “most certain blockbuster of the year.”
The movie’s genre, filmmakers and stars, whether it’s part of a series, and social media participation are all factors in The Numbers’ prediction algorithm.
“The ‘Jurassic World’ films have had massive opening weekends [in the United States], and there’s no reason to believe that won’t happen with ‘Dominion,'” Nash said. “And those are films with four-quadrant appeal.”
“Jurassic World” and “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom,” the first two films, each grossed over $1 billion worldwide.
“Dominion” might accomplish the same, according to a theatre industry insider who asked to remain anonymous, especially if it gets into China, where the first two films grossed $228 million and $261 million, respectively.
The China Film Administration has cleared the film, according to Jeff Sneider of The Ankler, but no release date has been set. That final point may be concerning; for example, “Spider-Man: No Way Home” was approved for release in China but has yet to make its appearance there.
“Jurassic World: Dominion” will be the “most guaranteed blockbuster of the year,” according to Bruce Nash, the founder of the box-office tracking website The Numbers.
The Numbers’ prediction system takes into account the film’s genre, directors and stars, whether it’s part of a series, and social media activity.
“The ‘Jurassic World’ films had tremendous opening weekends [in the United States], and there’s no reason to expect ‘Dominion’ won’t,” Nash added. “Those are flicks that have a four-quadrant appeal.”