There was a time not so long ago when movies were the most eagerly anticipated media events. The most credible writers and actors worked in the movies, and TV was seen as a lesser medium full of cheaper content and deserving of far less attention. While TV was always the place to go for live events like awards ceremonies or sports (and you can see a great write up of the big 12 rosters for college football right now at satellitetvcable.com), for scripted drama it was movies that we looked to, and of course the newest movies were only there to be seen in movie theaters.
In recent years, however, there has been a well documented shift from movies to TV in the entertainment industry. Here, we look at why:
Better Technology At Home
In the past, the sound quality and screen size made watching something in a theater something of an event. Now, we tend to have great home cinema systems that allow us to enjoy great picture quality and sound, but without the annoying teenagers giggling throughout the thing we are watching or the inability to pause should a bathroom or snack break be required! At home, most people can now have a rich viewing experience, and this makes it less appealing to head out to the movie theater for a movie night. With TV packages, you can have fairly new movies, live sport, and of course television programming through your own chosen tech, and without paying a premium for popcorn and soda!
Another reason people tend to stay at home and watch TV rather than heading out to the movies now is that it is so much more flexible than in the past. With a DVR and a subscription to a service like Netflix, you can watch all manner of great shows no matter what your interests and tastes, and they will start when you want them to. You can also watch for as long as you like. Nothing to do on a Sunday? You can watch an entire series rather than just one movie! Also, of course, you can skip the ads and trailers, something that has never been possible in movie theaters.
Will Movie Theaters Die Out?
Movie theaters are likely to always have a place in society as somewhere to go for entertainment, but box office sales are likely to become far less important in judging how successful a movie has been, and as we have already seen, many big name actors will start to consider a good TV project to be just as big a career step as a Hollywood movie role. As we get even better tech at home and are able to do things like watch in 3D at home, movie makers will likely begin to consider the home theater as where their craft will most often be viewed.
The shift from theaters to the home has so far been a gradual one, but is one that is likely to continue and have a real impact on how we think about our viewing experiences.