Movie Audiences: Tickets Price Too High?

Many American feel that movie tickets are too pricy, a variable that affects the frequency of their attendance, accoring to financial advisory firm PwC, which surveyed 1,044 people online between October to November 2014.

53 percent of moviegoers don’t see more movies in theaters because they cost too much.

30% say they prefer to watch them on their own schedule

29% prefer to spend their money on other recreational activities.

For the first three quarters of 2014, the average ticket price was $8.12, according to information provided by the National Association of Theatre Owners.

As is known, the summer box office fell to its lowest levels in 17 years.

However, PwC argues that the decline is a momentary trend. Despite hits such as “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes,” there weren’t enough of compelling titles to lift ticket sales.

“Great movies bring people to movie theaters,” said Joe Atkinson, entertainment and media advisory leader, PwC. “ better movies bring in bigger audiences.”

Beyond lowering the prices, there are other routes and incentives.

87% of moviegoers were interested in some kind of subscription plan, allowing them to pay a set fee for an unlimited number of movies.

AMC and MoviePass allow subscribers to see a movie a day for monthly packages that run between $35 to $45.

Moviegoers also mentioned the possibility of last-minute cheap seats. Over half of people said that was something that would encourage them to see more movies.

22% of those polled said they would like to be able to buy a digital copy of the movie they were watching while buying a ticket

21% said they wanted to participate in some sort of “super-fan” program.

Rising cellphone costs to subscription services such as Netflix is not a major factor.

“Disposable income is influencing about 18 percent of people,” said Atkinson. “That’s not inconsequential but it’s not a massive trend.”

The ability to reserve seats in advance was less appealing to younger respondents than subscription plans or cheaper seats.

In the past decade, movie theaters have invested in larger Imax screens, buying 3D projectors, installing more comfortable seating, though only 9% of respondents cited better technology as a factor, and 8% mentioned more comfortable seating.

Genre Still Counts

While price remains a concern for audiences, other factors count. The specific movie genre is the biggest driver of viewing habits:

Action adventure was the clear choice of 64% of consumers, followed by comedy at 56% and drama at 38%.  Indie and art house films were the choice of only 3% of respondents.

Word of Mouth

Friends’ recommendation is also critica, especially for younger ticket buyers:

48% of those between the ages of 18 and 24 and 44% of those between 25 to 34 mentioned a friend’s faavorite opinion as a motivating factor. But only 21% of audience members between 50 to 59 mentioned this variable.

Core Audience

Moviegoers between the ages of 18 to 34 watched an average of 6 films in theaters every year, more than any other age group. Moviegoers aged 35 to 49 saw 5 films, while those over 50 watched 4.

Movie theaters objected whenever studios have tried to offer films on-demand or online while they are still on the big screen.  However, 71 percent of respondents were interested in paying more in order to watch a newly released film in their homes, while 82% of consumers would pay between $10 to $20 extra for the convenience.