A recent study conducted by events analytics firm Performance Research—in partnership with Full Circle Research Co. and published by Variety—could mean bad news for Hollywood. Seventy percent of respondents said they prefer to watch new movies from home—a continuation of a worrisome trend for the film industry. Thirteen percent of those respondents said they would watch from a local cinema, and the last 17% were unsure.
It may seem as if the news is constantly reporting about the masses of people who are rushing to be social again now that states are opening back up, but most people plan to remain cautious before jumping back into the mix. The study surveyed 1,000 people to see what the entertainment industry is facing when it comes to earning back public confidence in attending venues again.
The most notable findings state that 52% of respondents said they will attend fewer large public events, even after the CDC and local governments say it’s safe to do so. Sixty percent of respondents say the idea of attending a public event will scare them for a while. The study covered Broadway, live concerts, and movie theaters, and the answers are similar across the board. The most challenging stat for the entertainment industry was this one: Ninety percent of respondents want a COVID -19 vaccine before going back to public venues.
One of the more surprising findings had to do with movie genre—long dominated by IP-driven “sure bets” like superhero movies and basically everything that comes out of Disney. But here, comedy had the most allure, with 43% of respondents naming it as the genre they most preferred to see on a big screen. Drama was the next most popular, with 35% of respondents, and superhero movies came in third, with 33% of respondents. Nineteen percent of respondents were interested in horror.
It’s not surprising that people will remain cautious for a while, but if we’re being optimistic, maybe we can read these responses as a sign that people will demand that Hollywood rearrange some of its priorities. Comedy has been on the decline in box office numbers for the past couple of years, but the need for laughter in high anxiety times is clutch.