When was the last time you went to the movie theater? Now think about how often you went to the movies pre-pandemic. Most likely there is a big difference between how often you used to go versus how often you visit the theaters now. Blame it on the pandemic.
According to Comscore, movie theaters lost 80% of box office revenue in 2020. But theaters want us to come back and they are making big investments and even bigger changes to get us to return. Bigger screens. Cushy seats that recline – and are heated. Special effects matched with seating. More variety in food and drinks. Want to snack on sushi? How about an alcoholic beverage with that? And the list goes on…
Services are more numerous, but prices are increasing as well. Some theaters charge 65% more for movies shown on new screens such as ScreenX and RealD 3D. Lounging seats take up more space than upright chairs so theaters now hold fewer people. Viewers also pay more to reserve premium seats.
Theaters go beyond movies. Companies are now creating “cinema entertainment centers” that include movies, restaurants, bowling, rock-climbing walls, and bumper cars. These go beyond just showing movies and want to capture consumers’ attention for multiple events and activities.
Let’s go the movies?
Group Activities and Discussion Questions:
- Poll students about their movie theater visits. How often do they go to the theater?
- Why don’t they go to the theater?
- Show video about the topic: https://youtu.be/j7vPR6e49aE
- Divide students into teams. Have each team develop an idea to enlarge a movie theater’s entertainment options.
- Next, have each team develop a promotional plan for the new venue with at least three tactics.
Source: Margolies, J. (31 May 2023). Larger screens, heated seats, sushi: Theater owners want you back. New York Times; Whitten, S. (25 February 2023). Movie theaters aren’t dying – they’re evolving. CNBC.