NY Post, TVWeek

How Millennials Are Killing the Movie Business

Apr 18, 2016  •  Post A Comment

The film industry has a serious problem with millennials, according to a report in the New York Post. The report sums up the problem as “kids just aren’t going to the movies as much.”

The AMC theater chain recently flirted with — and rejected — the idea of allowing texting in theaters as a way of making the experience more friendly to young people, as we reported last week. The Post reports that the texting idea offers a hint of how desperate the situation has become.

“Despite a slew of superhero sequels and fanboy comic book movies hitting theaters, the number of frequent young moviegoers declined last year, according to the industry’s latest figures,” the Post reports. “The number of ticket buyers ages 12 to 17 fell to 5.3 million in 2015, down from 5.5 million in each of the two previous years. That figure is also down from 6.3 million in 2012, according to numbers from the Motion Picture Association of America.”

The number fell 3.6% even in a year when high-profile, heavily youth-focused movies such as “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” “Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2” and “Ant-Man” hit theaters, the report notes.

“There was an even bigger drop-off among moviegoers ages 18 to 24 years,” the Post reports. “Over the past three years, that group fell by more than one-third, to 5.7 million last year, down from 8.7 million in 2102.”



  1. I’m a millennial (granted, on the older end), but I can tell you that the reason I avoid movie theaters isn’t because I have to put down my phone for two hours. It’s because movie theaters offer less these days compared to what you can get at home. Also, they are hugely over-priced and disgustingly filthy. I’d rather wait a few months to watch that movie I’ve been wanting to see in the comfort of my own home, on my huge TV with picture and sound quality nearly as good as at the theater, and not have to sit on a germ-ridden, sticky seat next to some guy whose BO smells even worse than his chili cheese dog.

    • Nick – You are a great writer … seriously … you should do commentary on stuff like theaters …
      I really enjoyed reading your response –

      • Thanks for the compliment!

  2. Yep…you are a millennial. Negative to anybody around you. I don’t know what movie theaters you frequent, but the ones I go to are nice and clean. I love the reclining seats and the fact that we can reserve seats now in advance.

    • I’m really not a perpetually negative person, but movie theaters happen to annoy me. I live on Long Island, and I have never been to a movie theater that I’ve considered clean. Even newly-renovated theaters seem to get trashed within a matter of months. Between the filth and the prices, not only for tickets but also for refreshments ($5 for a small fountain soda???), the value proposition is just weak.

      I swear, I’m a generally positive person.

  3. As the parent of an 18-24 year old (college graduate biologist) I have watched her movie going the past several years. She and her group of friends will go to the late night opening of a few pix they are nuts about but spend their time gaming or socializing outside of movie theatres most of the time. Then there is the cost. They can do a club with live music and a couple of drinks for the cost of a movie and popcorn! Ticket prices are about 59% higher than inflation the past 50 years and popcorn an amazing 200% higher. Obviously millennials have no concept of this at all but their lack of attendance suggests that it might be a factor anyway. As a full time marketer (CMO) for a large company I can tell you that everything will sell at the right price. If movies are not selling, check the price first!

  4. Millennials can’t kill the movie business because they aren’t the only ones who go to movies.

    The population as a whole is getting older and has been for decades. With the passage of time, there are fewer and fewer people of particular ages in particular age groups.

    The footloose-and-fancyfree with plenty of discretionary income (from the Bank of Mom & Dad), 12 to 17 year old of a decade ago is today’s 22 to 27 year old adult with a significant other, job, responsibilities, family, and a lot less discretionary income.

  5. It’s the content that is redundant. Done with comics and animated family crap. They try to get everyone and please no one. You don’t even see more adult rated shows because of family concerns. Gee, HBO isn’t that popular with Game of Thrones showing boob’s, etc.? Really? Yes they are. It’s like Puritan times.

  6. Millennials aren’t killing the movie business. High ticket prices are!!! A family of 4 would literally have to commit bankruptcy just to attend a movie screening. Ticket prices are TOO DAMN HIGH!!! and don’t even get me started on the cost of a small popcorn, coke and candy prices. It’s OUTRAGEOUS!!

  7. I am a Millennial, and I only go to the movies when i really want to see a certian movie. I enjoy the movies, but it is really expensive. You can wait a few days and watch most of the movies online for free.

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