Box office hits bounce back in North America but could see a dramatic intermission from current strikes

movie tickets, ticket sales, actors, writers, hollywood, theater

•North America’s movie theater business has been challenged since the pandemic shutdowns and a shift to at-home streaming services. Ticket sales totaled $711 million in 2022, down from a pre-pandemic average of $1.4 billion (US and Canada), and revenues are still off a third from 2019.

•There has been a gradual return to better times with increased ticket sales this year. This rebound is attributed to Hollywood screening popular films that attract moviegoers.

•Major releases in 2023 have returned to their long-term average, with the top five productions hitting solid ticket numbers (21% of total ticket sales versus 17% long-term average).  Recently released productions like Barbie, Oppenheimer, and The Sound of Freedom are helping to drive performance, amid the strike by the Writers Guild of America (WGA). 

•While the impact of the WGA strike is too early to assess, any production and release delays will put additional financial pressure on theaters as they work to stabilize and adjust to streaming’s disruption

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