Many experts, cinephiles and movie lovers maintain that cinema must be seen in the cinema, on the big screen. But reality is stubborn, and without wanting to be ashamed, I am going to provide ten incontestable facts below that suggest that movie theaters will soon become a museum piece, when not places converted into anything, even a Macdonald’s restaurant, like It happened to my beloved Eliseos cinema in Zaragoza.
1) In fact, movie theaters have already become suitable places for activities outside the Seventh of Art. Operas, ballets or plays that take place in other cities are broadcast live there. Or they become a room for presentations of strategic plans or product launches by different companies.
2) The Economic cost to get a room forward is not small. Venue rental, maintenance, electricity, heating, box office and cabin staff, cleaning… Some say that the price of a movie ticket is high, but the exhibitor must share with the distributor. And even income from popcorn has been reduced in times of pandemic, for fear of contagion during its intake.
3) Initiatives such as the Film Festival and the like can be bread for today, but hunger for tomorrow. The rooms are full on such occasions, but the habit of regularity cannot be created, the incentive of a cheaper price is required. The solution of extending the viewer’s day, traditionally Wednesday, to other days during the week, livens things up a bit, but not too much. And there is not much room to play with.
4) Netflix It was harshly criticized for making its premieres directly on its platform, with few exceptions in which they made a limited release in theaters just 10 days before offering it in streaming. Although perhaps the only thing he did was admit what the others refused to accept, the growing marginality of the rooms.
5) The Covid-19 pandemic It has been a key moment to take the pulse of the future of cinemas. The closure was forced and the public got even more used to watching movies at home. With the reopening the fear persisted, there is not the same public as before. In the end, the films that triumph are those of great spectacle, Spider-Man: No Way Home, dunes, batmanthose of Santiago Segura…
6) And the auteur cinema and for moviegoers, and the original version rooms? There is a hipster and gafapasta public that is going to see some titles, although they are also alternative theater and other cultural offerings. There are titles such as the Japanese Drive My Car that show that they can bring theaters to life, but in the same way as commercial films that resemble fairground attractions, which you cannot install in your home.
7) Another vein of the rooms is the family audience. Sometimes it is a considerable expense to go to the movies with the children, but it is always a great plan, and it involves the sale of a handful of tickets. The success of titles like Charmed Y Sing 2! they were among the most watched titles at Christmas, and even minor animation titles draw the public to the room.
8) pixar has not returned to release films in theaters since Onwards it crashed in 2020 in rooms because of the coronavirus. Fear, resignation, paradigm shift… You name it, but Soul, Luca Y Net they’ve gone straight to Disney+.
9) In fact, Disney has drastically reduced the exploitation window in rooms: West Side Story he trained on December 25, and on March 2 he was in Disney+and even more rapid was the arrival of Charm, from theaters on November 26 jumped to platforms on December 24. The strategy of the mouse company is to increase the number of subscribers to Disney +. They are not the only ones who think like this, to create a solid base of clients they need premieres with punch.
10) The pandemic has served as an alibi for experiments, and although it was claimed that they were temporary, the thing is not so clear. Universal has been releasing some of its films on video on demand a month after its premiere. Warner toyed with the simultaneous release with duneswhich would lead to the anger of directors who love the theater experience like Christopher Nolan, who broke his long relationship with the company. Williams method has come to HBO Max just a month and a half after its premiere in theaters.