Even prior to the arrival of COVID-19, exhibitors were actively considering how best to attract younger audiences to the theatre. Last week, Morning Consult published a report with results from a recent survey they conducted of Gen Z consumers (ages 13-24) to gauge their interest in going to cinemas. The report includes both positive and negative indicators. On the down side, 70% of the Gen Zers surveyed indicated that the early availability of new films online was one reason why they would not see those films in a movie theatre. The perceived “high price” of movie tickets was also an issue, with 72% citing cost as another reason they might choose not to see a movie in a theatre.
On the positive side, 78% of those polled said that they would visit theatres more frequently if they offered lower priced tickets or special discounts on concessions/tickets bundles. In addition, theatres may regain some traction with young customers if major studios return to their traditional distribution model which begins with an exclusive theatrical release window, which is widely expected next year once the disruptions of the pandemic have subsided.