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Blockbuster $40 bn movie year belies poor health of theatrical release

Only the movie industry can bask in consistent self-congratulation, when all the indicators are that it’s future is far from certain. comScore this week used a headline which claimed 2017 was the best for theatrical box office revenues since records began at $39.92 billion. While we are not doubting the 3% increase over last year’s revenue we worry that North American revenues are down, and that there is no “per showing” or “per seat” calculation. It is well known that in Asia-Pacific there are continuous build outs of new cinemas, whereas in the US there is, if anything a contraction of movie viewing locations, and less seats per showing sold. The only thing that has stabilized theatrical revenues in the…

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