May 28, 2024

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Hollywood’s SUMMER of Discontent



According to reports, U.S. box office totals are in a freefall, and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. Terrible news for the film industry, which has practically owned Get Out Of The House entertainment media for the better part of a century. Even with the standard slate of action adventure movies and big budget summer blockbusters playing in theaters across the country, U.S. ticket sales are down at least 20%.

Elie Hirschfeld, an entrepreneur who works extensively in the arts, particularly on Broadway noted, “This appears to be a trend, not a fluke, and the industry needs to start paying attention, yesterday. But, it seems like, at least some of them, have their heads in the sand. Transformers 4, Godzilla, and the latest Planet of the Apes movie all fell well short of domestic box office forecasts. This means Hollywood Big Boys such as Paramount, Warner Brothers, and Fox all missed the mark and failed to meet expectations. Some prognosticators have said moviegoers are just tiring of retread sequels, but there are many other causes to consider. Digital media and on demand programming have hit the theater with a solid one-two combination.”

Now, not only can people get as good (or better) resolution on their home screens, they can watch titles – even some new releases – whenever they want. The former excitement of waiting till opening day just doesn’t hold the same power it once did. Plus, with films going from the box office to the on demand queue in mere months, many consumers are opting to wait a bit longer and enjoy the films in the privacy and comfort of their own homes.

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Without a captive audience to depend on, Hollywood needs to make some changes or they will find their returns diminishing even further. Step one for that would be to look at where the consumer mindset actually is rather than just giving them what they always have.