If the movie industry is in trouble you sure couldn’t tell at last week’s huge international CinemaCon convention in Las Vegas.
Not only did this year’s annual exhibitor-distributor love fest break all previous attendance records, the convention’s accompanying mega-size trade show was completely sold out.
So what’s it all mean?
A renewed confidence in not only America’s, but the world’s growing appetite for the movie going experience.
To that end theater exhibitors the world over are updating their cinemas with the latest in digital-visual and sound delivery systems, more luxurious and upscale in-theater offerings and a renewed concentration on NEW theater construction.
And Kansas City is a good example of this resurgence.
Last year saw two new cinemas open in our market, and 2014 will add a pair of new complexes to the metro.
It will also elevate a refurbished AMC Town Center 20 in Leawood to luxury status.
(The NEW theaters are Cinetopia’s Overland Park 18 as well as a new Screenland in downtown KC.)
X-Box and other diversions have cut heavily into that demographic which was once the bread and butter of the box office.
It’s not that these young males aren’t going to the movies anymore—THEY ARE—just not every weekend. They’re more selective these days, choosing the big tentpoles and must-see flicks and leaving the regular fare in the dust.
They’re flocking to theaters again—providing there are films they want to see like THE MONUMENTS MEN, SAVING MR. BANKS, AMERICAN HUSTLE and THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL.
So how’s Hollywood’s cinematic fare shaping up in 2014?
I’d say it’s on a par with 2013 which ended up doing extremely well at the box office.
Here’s a brief glimpse of three movie titles each from the major seven Hollywood studios for 2014:
* Draft Day with Kevin Costner (April 11)
* Expendables 3 (Aug. 15)
* Hunger Games: Mockingjay–Part 1 (Nov. 21)
* Transformers: Age of Extinction ( June 27)
* Hercules with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (July 25)
* Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar (Nov. 7)
* The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (May 2)
* Jonah Hill’s 22 Jump Street (June 13)
* Denzel Washington as The Equalizer (Sep. 26)
20th Century Fox:
* Cameron Diaz, Kate Upton–The Other Woman (April 25)
* X-Men: Days of Future Past (May 23)
* Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (July 11)
* Seth Rogen’s Neighbors (May 9)
* Seth MacFarlane’s A Million Ways To Die In the West (May 30)
* Lloyd and Harry back in Dumb and Dumber To (Nov. 14)
* Captain America: The Winter Soldier (April 4)
* Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy (Aug. 1)
* Johnny Depp, Meryl Streep Into the Woods (Dec. 25)
(Sorry, no PIXAR title this year from Disney.)
* Johnny Depp’s Transcendence (April 18)
* Broadway’s Jersey Boys directed by Clint Eastwood (May 20)
* The Hobbit: There and Back Again (Dec. 17)
And that doesn’t include 2014 output by smaller distributors including Weinstein, Fox Searchlight, Sony Pictures Classics, Focus, Relativity, Open Road and IFC films.
However if there was one common consensus at CinemaCon last week, it had to have been the incredible movie slate set for 2015!
Now let me just tease you with three titles and see if you don’t agree:
* 50 Shades Of Gray (Feb. 13)
* Marvel’s Avengers: Age Of Ultron (May 1)
* J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: Episode VII (Dec. 18)
The future of cinemas in America and around the world? Upscale, luxurious—and never better.