This summer will be significantly better than last, or at least that’s the expectation from Fandango’s second annual Moviegoing Trends & Insights Study, which just dropped this morning ahead of CinemaCon.
Among those 6K moviegoers polled by the online movie ticket retailer, 83% plan to see three or more movies in theaters between the May to Labor Day period. That’s great news for exhibition and the major studios who only relished a $1.75 billion summer season last year, some movies following a theatrical-day-and-date model. This summer, it’s arguably a pure theatrical window for all, many practicing either a 17-day or 45-day period of theatrical play.
Fandango’s study also saw an uptick in consumer satisfaction with the moviegoing experience over the past year: 99% of moviegoers said they are happy with their recent cinema visits vs. 93% during the prior year.
Other key takeaways of Fandango’s study include:
In the past 6 months, 89% said that moviegoing is their favorite activity outside of the home, ranking higher than dining out, shopping or sporting activities. Those exhibitors looking for recouped revenue after being closed during 2020 and the first quarter of 2021 will be pleased to know that 93% said they plan to purchase concessions at the theaters, up from 84% last year.
Other positive signs for the business, which believe films are divided in two categories of ‘the haves’ (tentpoles) and ‘have nots’ (anything that isn’t a superhero movie), is that 93% of those moviegoers polled said they’ll buy tickets to titles across multiple genres, not just superhero/comic-book movies.
The study also underscored that the 18-34 demographic is the most potent crowd when it comes to moviegoing, as we’ve seen, that group increasing their moviegoing frequency the most next to 35-54, and those over 55. And when people go to the movies, 85% prefer films in premium formats like IMAX, Dolby or PLFS auditoriums, feeling they make the moviegoing experience more immersive. That said, close to 70% said that only-in-theater movies are higher quality than straight-to-streaming titles.
When it comes to moviegoers and how they make their decisions when it comes to getting off the couch:
–93% select films based on their trailers.
–91% ask for recommendations from families or friends.
–90% want to see their favorite stars on the big screen
–90% pick the latest installment of a favorite franchise.
–88% search for positive ratings and reviews.
“As film fans head back to theaters, we are starting to see growing signs of recovery as we make the turn towards a great summer of movies ahead,” said Fandango VP Domestic Ticketing Melissa Heller. “Our study shows moviegoers are happier than ever to be back at the theater. With more in-theater releases on the horizon, film fans plan to see multiple movies in the cinema, enjoying all their favorite concessions throughout the summer season.”
Of the top movies moviegoers want to see this summer per Fandango:
1. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (May 6)
2. Thor: Love and Thunder (July 8)
3. Jurassic World Dominion (June 10)
4. Top Gun: Maverick (May 27)
5. Minions: The Rise of Gru (July 1)
6. Lightyear (June 17)
7. Elvis (June 24)
8. Nope (July 22)
9. Bullet Train (July 29)
10. Downton Abbey: A New Era (May 20)
Fandango’s moviegoer study was conducted during Q1 of this year. Those who participated had purchased at least one movie ticket over the past 12 months. The demographic breakdown of the group was 72% ages 18-54, with 58% identifying as female, 41% male and 1% non-binary. Diversity demos were 61% Caucasian, 21% Latin and Hispanic; 8% Black; 8% Asian/Pacific Islander; and 5% other.