Of Tadpoles and Tentpoles

A 10 step plan to save the movie theater business

Inside Out 2 proved to be a hit in its opening weekend at the box office! A big hit even! Hollywood is back!

Nope, still screwed.

With the current theatrical situation, that is. And these successes actually just underscore the issues. As if this week's success matters less than last week's failure. This type of framing just masks the completely untenable situation underneath. The movie theater business, as we knew it, is over. No one wants to admit it, and certainly not Hollywood, even though it's beyond obvious, and has been for years.

Movies like Inside Out 2 can and will always have a home in movie theaters, so this weekend proves nothing other than Disney can still figure out the correct model for success when they actually put their mind to it and not to, well, way too much other stuff. But much of the IP of Disney and a handful of other big franchises (meaning both properties and stars), are increasingly an outlier. The movie theater industry needs to be much smaller and more selective than it is right now to survive longterm.

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