Despite Horrible Summer Box Office, Moviegoing Isn’t Dead: Lessons Learned
Our creative industries are the engines of our future economy so I tend to watch them a bit.
The lack of an August marquee title in the spirit of last year’s Suicide Squad has slowed the annual box office by 6%, with $7.6B compared to the same eight-month period in 2016. But many say if we were down in the double-digits annually, it would greatly indicate that audiences have abandoned moviegoing. Another promising sign, and more telling about the strength of moviegoing, is that the foreign B.O. is +3% over 2016 with $18.1 billion, according to ComScore. Even with the currency exchanges hurting us, and the fact that we’re getting fewer dollars out of Asia and Europe for the same ticket price, Hollywood films are still beating last year’s running international B.O., and that’s very good.
Also realize the following: Before summer started, the 2017 domestic B.O. was up close to 4% over 2016 with a running B.O. of $3.8 billion. By the start of May, we had one March release approaching $500M (Beauty and the Beast), two titles at (or nearing) $200M-plus (Logan, Fate of the Furious); and a total 12 titles that cracked past $100M, 13 if you include the $123.9M residual that Disney’s Rogue One: A Star Wars Story generated in the calendar year.