Poll: Downturn in Movie Box Office Looks Serious, Will Ads Fall Too?

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By: E&P Staff

A new Gallup poll released today confirms what the box office numbers from the past few months have suggested: Americans are staying away from the multiplex in droves.

Asked if their moviegoing habits had changed in the past five years, nearly half (48%) said they were going out to the theater less. Only 15% said they were seeing more movies, with the rest staying about the same.

Asked why they are reducing their habit, one in three said they “prefer to watch movies at home” (the DVD factor) but 1 in 4 said “it costs too much to go to the movies,” and 1 in 5 alluded to the “poor quality” of movies today.

Quality also played a big factor in the answers to another question on what factor would get them into the theater more often. Here, 43% named lower ticket and concessions prices as the main draw, with 36% citing better quality movies–and 25% “better controls on audience behavior.”

Another 19% said they’d go out more often if movie DVDs didn’t come out so quickly. DVD sales now represent three times box office earnings.

The poll was based on interviews with 1,006 adults, with a margin for error of plus or minus three percentage points.

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