Two-Thirds Of Adults Will Abandon Movie Theaters And Wait For Streaming

By Christopher Isaac | Published


Even with the restrictions of the pandemic long gone by this point, people still are not returning to see movies in theaters at the same rate that they used to. It has been very hit and miss with newly released movies that once would have been blockbusters actually being able to earn their money back now. However, it seems the explanation for all of this really is as simple as the fact that most people today prefer watching movies at home via streaming. In fact, a recent study shows that two-thirds of movie watchers now would rather wait to see a movie on streaming platforms than seeing it when it is first released in theaters.

Theaters Aren’t Getting Cheaper


This comes from a new poll by HarrisX that found that just 34 percent of U.S. adults prefer to watch movies in theaters now. That means everyone else likes to catch the latest movie on their couch through whatever streaming service they use. Many likely knew that theater patrons had declined, but not that significantly.

So what is the reason for people coming to prefer movies on streaming? As with a lot of things nowadays, inflation is a major factor. The most common reason given for the preference towards streaming was the current cost of movie ticket prices. Following closely behind that in second place was also the cost of concessions. People are much more conscious that they can grab a soda and heat up some popcorn at home without it costing $40 to get some for the whole family.


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However, even with the prices being the most common given reason for more streaming from home, some people are still genuinely concerned about sanitation at theaters. Around 23 percent of people said they still avoid theaters out of concerns for Covid and the flu. While the majority of people have indeed moved on from Covid precautions, for some like immunocompromised individuals, those fears never really went away.

For such people, the convenience of streaming is likely a welcome addition to allow them to have a way to still keep up with modern movies.

Lack Of Interest


We have seen repeated examples of pretty concrete proof that movie theater interest is way down. Marvel movies were once quite reliable to bring in around a billion dollars for each of their movies, and now they are struggling with flops like The Marvels, and Madame Web. Even Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, the first new entry in that series in 15 years, brought in disappointing financial returns. That aligns with the HarrisX poll that revealed that of those who prefer streaming, 24 percent said they just are not interested in what is playing in theaters.

Blockbuster Fatigue

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Perhaps that suggests blockbuster fatigue has played a role in that switch towards streaming. There was a period where every movie coming out felt like it was some pop culture phenomenon. But with such little downtime between the next big sequel to different franchises,  maybe it burned people out.

Streaming Will Win In The End

Regardless of where you stand on the matter, the streaming crowd will likely win in the end. Movie theaters are continuing to struggle and close, so they might soon become a novelty in the near future. Who knows, maybe some time without theaters is what audiences need to really rekindle their interest.

Source: IndieWire