Before COVID-19 crippled the film industry in unprecedented ways, the writing was on the wall— movie theaters were in trouble. Sure, there were record-breaking grosses for films, including “Avengers: Endgame” grossing more than any other film ever, but cinemas and studios began to rely more and more on tentpole films, pushing mid-level features to streaming and theaters were starting to notice year after year of profit declines. All the pandemic did was expedite a process that seemed to be destined to happen anyway. That said, film fans still want theaters to survive and studios, such as Paramount, think it’s going to happen. However, as the CEO of that studio recently said, the future is also going to be in streaming.
“We believe in the power of theatrical releases and we have faith that after things get back to normal, audiences will enthusiastically return to theaters,” said Gianopulos (via Deadline). “At the same time, consumers have increasingly embraced streaming as another way to enjoy films. Our strategy accounts for both.”
At the end of the day, when things go “back to normal,” it doesn’t seem as if studios are going to reset what they were doing before. Paramount is going to send blockbusters to theaters and everything else to streaming. So, if theaters survive, it doesn’t look like there will be a huge paradigm shift, which doesn’t mean everything is going to be fixed. But hey, at least Paramount has hope that they’ll survive, right?