With a strong slate of product heading to theatres in 2021, Wall Street should stop assuming streaming will kill exhibition.
Exhibition’s demise has been predicted since the ’50s. First it was TV, then cable TV & videocassettes & DVDs that would be the theatrical giant killer. Well, theatres survived, grosses mushroomed, and studios made tons of money from the new ancillary markets.
Streaming and theatres can show the same movies, but they meet different audience needs. In 2020 with few theatres open and nothing new playing, streaming was really the only game in town.
As vaccines roll out and theatres re-open, people will want to escape their homes and be with their friends. Moviegoing’s a favorite way to do that. For years, sports fans have met friends at sports bars to watch games they could see at home on cable. But some days people want to get out and have fun and other days they just want to sit on their couch at home with a beer. People may have PVOD at home, but that doesn’t mean they’re ready to give up the shared experience of watching big movies like WONDER WOMAN 1984 (pictured) the way they were meant to be seen in theatres.