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  1. #41
    In the US, movie theater going is mostly concentrated in only a few major cities and markets

    Almost all of the media you consume that is produced in the US is primarily created to appeal to those specific markets and leading demographics.

    People outside those markets and demos don't represent a significant enough value to bother creating media for.

  2. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivanstone View Post
    Most people don’t have a multiple square meter screens at home. I got a pretty good chair and head set. The chair doesn’t have a proper foot rest and the head set is still a head set.

    Maybe your local theatre sucks. Mine doesn’t.
    My theater is fine, as is my home.
    Doesn't change the nature of the question though.
    In a world where you can spend money, even if it were to be infinite, why would you dedicate the time just to spend it at a cinema that may or may not even be better than the home experience?
    "What does that $13 improve on?" really is the correct way of looking at it.

    It's a bit like those who try to make fun of others for being "poor" when others do not spend as much on a phone, yet when you show up with, say, genuinely valuable golden accessories they start sqeaking.
    This is a signature of an ailing giant, boundless in pride, wit and strength.
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  3. #43
    Quote Originally Posted by loras View Post
    My theater is fine, as is my home.
    Doesn't change the nature of the question though.
    In a world where you can spend money, even if it were to be infinite, why would you dedicate the time just to spend it at a cinema that may or may not even be better than the home experience?
    "What does that $13 improve on?" really is the correct way of looking at it.

    It's a bit like those who try to make fun of others for being "poor" when others do not spend as much on a phone, yet when you show up with, say, genuinely valuable golden accessories they start sqeaking.
    Did I not mention the giant screen? Very, very few people have giant screens at home. Even a projection Tv isn’t the same thing. A well made home theatre isn’t possible for me at this time and it would cost thousands of dollars. The occasional trip to the theatre is a bargain.

  4. #44

  5. #45
    Oh no, the industry built around increasing ticket prices by 500% over a couple of years and trying to milk people with $20 popcorn is going out of business!

    WHAT A SHAME, THAT.

  6. #46
    Some movies make for amazing IMAX experiences though. Blade Runner 2049 was such a great audio visual experience that I watched it twice in IMAX, same with Dune.

    While the movies are fine on their own, even with a great sound system and a good TV, it'd be an inferior experience watching those movies at home.

    Denis Villeneuve makes great cinematic movies well worth the admission fee of IMAX theaters and has quickly become one of my favorite directors.
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  7. #47
    Quote Originally Posted by loras View Post
    In a world where you can spend money, even if it were to be infinite, why would you dedicate the time just to spend it at a cinema that may or may not even be better than the home experience?
    Equipment and community.

    Naturally, it would be difficult for the majority of moviegoers to replicate the scale of a theater. Even 75-inch and larger TVs do not offer the same viewing experience of typical theater or premium theater offerings such as Dolby, 4D, RPX, and IMAX. Fitting a 90-foot screen or projecting on a dome the size of a building are difficult things to achieve at home.

    Another factor is the nature of projected imagery vs. digital output. Cheaper, commercial theaters offer digital projection at X lumens because it is cheaper (this is why matinees are of lesser quality btw). However, top-class theaters will have true projection. Which has a markedly different artistic and psychological effect in the film. This can not be done at home either for cost or technical ability.

    For example, I went to see a showing of John Carpenter's The Thing in 70mm format that was projected by a fella who flew in from Germany for a week to air the film by engagement. That is beyond the movie viewer's at-home experience in most cases.

    The other half is that of community. The largest and most important period of money potential for a film is in its opening weekend. This is because films and the experience of going to a film are shared. Some genres such as horror or comedy rely greatly on the communal experience of viewing in a theater. And in recent decades the action-adventure film has exploited this as well with the revival of the Star Wars license and the boon of the Marvel Cinematic series.
    Last edited by Fencers; 2022-10-01 at 08:28 PM.

  8. #48
    Quote Originally Posted by Fencers View Post
    Equipment and community.

    Naturally, it would be difficult for the majority of moviegoers to replicate the scale of a theater.
    You're right of course, but the true question lies in the subjective value of the cinema experience. I think people are increasingly fine with the home-viewing experience if it means less money/time is needed. Sure it's not the same as a cinema, but it also doesn't cost as much. With streaming still rising, I expect this to be more and more the default, and eventually studios will stop holding their releases hostage, too.

    Movie theaters won't go extinct, but I would not be surprised in the least if they become niche venues banking on spectacle and special experiences rather than being the main mode of watching new releases. Not this year and not the next and probably not the next five... but that's where things are heading.

  9. #49
    100% not. They're certainly healthier than that headline (we don't pluralise with apostrophes).

    Unless you've got crazy money, there's no way something like Top Gun Maverick will be better at home.
    Seeing it on a proper IMAX screen, getting blasted back into your chair by the audio, is definitely something to go out for.

    You needn't even go to an IMAX, either. The big screen experience, as well as it being something to get people out, is definitely not going anywhere.
    I suppose, though, it would seem different to someone who didn't work in Film & Television.

    They're not dead. At most, you could say they're evolving.

  10. #50
    The Insane Val the Moofia Boss's Avatar
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    I rarely went to the movies over the past decade. Hollywood churns out shit and there is hardly anything worth my time. The only good American movies were Avatar 1, Pacific Rim 1, Mad Max Fury Road, Interstellar, and... um... I'm straining to think of anything else. Lots of crap like the Star Trek and Star Wars reboots or the MCU. Fathom event screenings of anime movie like Ghibli and Shinkai and Fate/SN were good, though.

  11. #51
    The Unstoppable Force Kaleredar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    You're right of course, but the true question lies in the subjective value of the cinema experience. I think people are increasingly fine with the home-viewing experience if it means less money/time is needed. Sure it's not the same as a cinema, but it also doesn't cost as much. With streaming still rising, I expect this to be more and more the default, and eventually studios will stop holding their releases hostage, too.

    Movie theaters won't go extinct, but I would not be surprised in the least if they become niche venues banking on spectacle and special experiences rather than being the main mode of watching new releases. Not this year and not the next and probably not the next five... but that's where things are heading.
    I think people are "missing something" in the equation, here, and that's the stars and directors of the movies. The people you need to, you know, make the movie.

    Normally, directors and movie stars take a chunk of the earnings of the theatrical release of the film, and that's where they get the majority of their money from. With a "direct to streaming" model, the theatrical release can be majorly curtailed if not superseded altogether, which makes the directors and movie stars majorly pissed because they essentially get nothing from streaming releases. To wit, Warner Brothers lost themselves a whole host of directors, notably Christopher Nolan, when they unilaterally chose to move their 2021 releases to day-and-date streaming and, as an example for movie stars, Scarlett Johansson brought a lawsuit against Disney for violating her contract on Black Widow (which promised her a chunk of its theatrical earnings) when they released it on Disney+.

    Hollywood is a vast and entrenched system of unions and contracts and the studios are far less free to act unilaterally than one might think. It's in the vested interests of directors and movie stars to see that movies continue to play in theaters, and until major contract re-negotiations happen to account for streaming they're going to have a vested interest in that model continuing, and will be more willing to work with studios that work in that way.
    Last edited by Kaleredar; 2022-10-01 at 09:01 PM.
    “Do not lose time on daily trivialities. Do not dwell on petty detail. For all of these things melt away and drift apart within the obscure traffic of time. Live well and live broadly. You are alive and living now. Now is the envy of all of the dead.” ~ Emily3, World of Tomorrow
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  12. #52
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaleredar View Post
    I think people are "missing something" in the equation, here, and that's the stars and directors of the movies. The people you need to, you know, make the movie.

    Normally, directors and movie stars take a chunk of the proceeds of the theatrical release of the film, and that's where they get the majority of their money from. With a "direct to streaming" model, the theatrical release can be majorly curtailed if not superseded altogether, which makes the directors and movie stars majorly pissed.
    Things change. Eventually the way movies are made will change, too, as will the way actors and directors are compensated. There's no intrinsic requirement that compensation can only go off theatrical release, nor that everyone has to be paid megamillions.

  13. #53
    I'm honestly shocked COVID didn't kill them off, I figured companies would realize direct to streaming was more profit (maybe it's not?). I'd much rather pay 20.00 (or a bit more) for a 24hr rental of a new release than deal with a theater, and I have a TV from 2009 that is not even 4k and use built-in speakers, so it's not like I have an amazing setup.
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  14. #54
    The Unstoppable Force Kaleredar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    Things change. Eventually the way movies are made will change, too, as will the way actors and directors are compensated. There's no intrinsic requirement that compensation can only go off theatrical release, nor that everyone has to be paid megamillions.
    Sure, but when people have the option of "being paid megamillions" or "not being paid megamillions" they're probably going to opt for the former and have a vested interest in keeping it that way. Keep in mind it's not like Scarlett Johansson wasn't paid at all, she was paid millions upfront... it's just that she was going to argue that she should have been owed further millions if Disney hadn't violated her contract. (She and Disney ended up settling.) Nolan's beef was a bit different; while I'm sure the monetary shortcomings were a major issue, he's a further advocate of the "cinematic experience" and wanting his films to be seen primarily in theaters, which is why he walked from Warner Brothers.

    As for the monetary release model, part of the problem of negotiating a new contract on that is how extremely opaque streaming services are on who watches what movies (basically, only the corporation that runs the streaming service has any look at the analytics) and how you then would pay a star/director. If a film goes straight to a streaming service that only requires a subscription to view, are the stars/directors entitled to a chunk of that... subscription cost?


    There's also an issue coming from the streaming side, and that is market saturation. Eventually, everyone who is realistically going to subscribe to any given subscription service will have done so (Netflix is running into this issue currently,) and if releasing a movie straight to streaming doesn't bring in new subscribers, that film is basically not earning them any money. And we've seen blowback towards Disney+ for releasing "premium releases" like the live-action Mulan remake where you not only had to be a subscriber but also pay for the film itself (something akin to 20 dollars I believe?) at which point people might figure... why not just see the movie in a theater?
    “Do not lose time on daily trivialities. Do not dwell on petty detail. For all of these things melt away and drift apart within the obscure traffic of time. Live well and live broadly. You are alive and living now. Now is the envy of all of the dead.” ~ Emily3, World of Tomorrow
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  15. #55
    Quote Originally Posted by Kaleredar View Post
    Sure, but when people have the option of "being paid megamillions" or "not being paid megamillions" they're probably going to opt for the former and have a vested interest in keeping it that way.
    Oh, for sure. But things change. Things work this way while consumers allow it. With more options, they'll shift their purchasing behavior. And then things will change.

    As I said, I don't expect this to be an overnight shift by any means. But I do expect it to shift.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kaleredar View Post
    As for the monetary release model, part of the problem of negotiating a new contract on that is how extremely opaque streaming services are on who watches what movies
    And that'll change, too. Monetization models can take many different forms, and as expectations and standards shift, things will adjust accordingly. Music streaming is one example. It's neither a technical nor an organizational hurdle that cannot be overcome for films. It'll simply take time.

  16. #56
    Quote Originally Posted by Biomega View Post
    Movie theaters won't go extinct, but I would not be surprised in the least if they become niche venues banking on spectacle and special experiences rather than being the main mode of watching new releases. Not this year and not the next and probably not the next five... but that's where things are heading.
    I think movie theaters are going to move to offer premium experiences as a competitive advantage. As well as movie theater subscription programs.

    Right now in my market, I am seeing a lot of folks who want to see movies opening weekend in the premium formats. They sell out the quickest, weeks in advance, and remain crowded through the theatrical run. Whereas if I look on any given app for seats to the same movie in standard formats availability is plentiful. This has been such that of the theaters we go to often have expanded the # of premium screens.

    It used to be our favorite Regal only had four RPX auditoriums. Now, there are like eight and they renovated the entire back section to have stadium seating now. The AMC I go to as well added 2 more Dolby auditoriums over the last year and a half.

    Local theaters and smaller chains are also offering movie sub plans and special screenings. They are pretty popular. We went to see some sporting events in this format with a packed house each time. Even music and concert events draw a good crowd- I just took my mom to one such.

    Theaters are likely going to offer either unreachable experiences (RPX, Imax, Dolby) or boutique offerings. Some are like going to an upscale movie/dining club now too.

    Quote Originally Posted by cuafpr View Post
    I'm honestly shocked COVID didn't kill them off, I figured companies would realize direct to streaming was more profit (maybe it's not?)
    It's not even close. Exhibitors take only a small % of a film's gross relative to rights streaming. Streaming films will never hit a billion like box office films. The latter feeds the former as well; No Way Home is only a big hit on streaming because it was a massive box office success. Whereas films such as Multiverse of Madness or Eternals that underperformed or had poor reception did not do as well on PVOD or streaming.

    Movies such as the Fast & Furious franchise (also in the Billion club) make most of their money at the box office. Universal is the only true rival to Disney and they kill at the box office.

  17. #57
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    I live in USA Suburbia and our movie theater is dead. Have to go to a big city over to get to a movie theater.

    It died from COVID, not a mass exodus from the format itself. I loved the cinema.

  18. #58
    Quote Originally Posted by Fencers View Post
    I think movie theaters are going to move to offer premium experiences as a competitive advantage. As well as movie theater subscription programs.

    Right now in my market, I am seeing a lot of folks who want to see movies opening weekend in the premium formats. They sell out the quickest, weeks in advance, and remain crowded through the theatrical run. Whereas if I look on any given app for seats to the same movie in standard formats availability is plentiful. This has been such that of the theaters we go to often have expanded the # of premium screens.

    It used to be our favorite Regal only had four RPX auditoriums. Now, there are like eight and they renovated the entire back section to have stadium seating now. The AMC I go to as well added 2 more Dolby auditoriums over the last year and a half.

    Local theaters and smaller chains are also offering movie sub plans and special screenings. They are pretty popular. We went to see some sporting events in this format with a packed house each time. Even music and concert events draw a good crowd- I just took my mom to one such.

    Theaters are likely going to offer either unreachable experiences (RPX, Imax, Dolby) or boutique offerings. Some are like going to an upscale movie/dining club now too.


    It's not even close. Exhibitors take only a small % of a film's gross relative to rights streaming. Streaming films will never hit a billion like box office films. The latter feeds the former as well; No Way Home is only a big hit on streaming because it was a massive box office success. Whereas films such as Multiverse of Madness or Eternals that underperformed or had poor reception did not do as well on PVOD or streaming.

    Movies such as the Fast & Furious franchise (also in the Billion club) make most of their money at the box office. Universal is the only true rival to Disney and they kill at the box office.
    I would not say never, and I still don't see it lasting. If I can use my own service and cut out the middleman and make $$ I'd be investing in it.. The only issue I see with direct-to streaming is they can't control how many people watch a screen. Get a group together and pay 40.00 to watch it vs each person paying 20+ per ticket. There are ways around that of course but very privacy-invasive and wouldn't go over well.
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  19. #59
    So is clubbing to find a partner... It got replaced by the apps.

    Imagine being a bar owner - first corona and then losing the biggest group of the customers.

  20. #60
    Quote Originally Posted by cuafpr View Post
    I would not say never, and I still don't see it lasting. If I can use my own service and cut out the middleman and make $$ I'd be investing in it.. The only issue I see with direct-to streaming is they can't control how many people watch a screen. Get a group together and pay 40.00 to watch it vs each person paying 20+ per ticket. There are ways around that of course but very privacy-invasive and wouldn't go over well.
    In all reality, what keeps the cinemas making money is their concessions with huge margins compared to movie tickets where they may get half that money. Getting a soft drink for $5-$7 that costs pennies to the cinema has a higher profit than they likely get from selling a single movie ticket. While ticket sales help, it's not where the real money is.

    When it comes to production companies, there's a huge shift to streaming because it's way more cost effective. Again, when it comes to everything that goes into making a movie and getting it shown on a screen, the production companies need to now make roughly two to three times as much as their movie budget in order to break even. When you see "X movie made $700mil in ticket sales!", in reality the production companies only made half of that. When you factor in other things like advertising (which is usually not put into the budget numbers you see publicly), losing out on money the cinemas cuts from their tickets is big.

    Why streaming is their current move is due to their profit model shifting from ticket sales to subscriptions. With subscriptions, you're basically getting all the money (unless you cut deals with places for promotionals, but that's getting into the weeds). With how often people visit the movies right now, you'll make more money keeping someone subscribed to your streaming service over time versus the quick hits from movies being cinema releases. In some ways, it's akin to live service games vs one-shot games: constant investing in your live service game is proving to be way more profitable than a one-and-done sale of a game with no live service.

    Obviously there's nuances to everything, but I foresee the cinemas suffering because production companies are shifting towards a new model. Where I think they'll hit a roadbump is that a lot of the content they're putting out is crap... but unfortunately a lot of people will devour mediocre content regardless because there's a drought in really outstanding content depending upon where you look. If you're looking at indie productions, times are great. However, the average normie is likely not looking beyond on the mainstream production companies, and these normies still make up the vast majority of their profits right now.
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