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The closure of movie theaters across the globe due to the COVID-19 pandemic has led to concern and speculation over the future of our industry. Cinemas are now re-opening in more markets each week, but with capacity restrictions. In our Road To Recovery reports we are seeing that some markets appear to be bringing audiences back more swiftly than others. Understandably, many are wondering what will happen next? How do we recover? What is still possible this year?
Over the past two weeks Gower Street’s Film Team has taken a deep dive into the six major markets currently available in FORECAST, our theatrical market simulation service, in a series of articles that offer exclusive recovery and end-of-year projections.
These articles, titled To Recovery And Beyond: Forecasting Box Office Recovery in 2020, show how Gower Street is determining what recovery could look like in UK/Ireland, Germany, Spain, Mexico, Australia and the Domestic market. They consider many factors, such as: capacity restrictions following social distancing measures; economic pressures; audience willingness to return; staggered re-openings across regions/states; differing re-opening plans per exhibitor; and lack of product in the market.
Using the Blueprint To Recovery markers we have previously outlined, including explaining the maths behind the 5 stages, our team have determined when, given the current circumstances and calendar, we would expect to see each goal achieved. They have also estimated a local currency end-of-year box office total for each market.
Each market is unique and understanding the differences is key in determining what may be possible. Across the six markets end of year expectations range between expected drops of 37% and 48%.
Our analysts have looked at the specifics of each market to ensure FORECAST delivers realistic expectations for our customers:
Based on an average of the past 5 years, we can see the first and final quarters of the box office year are traditionally the strongest. This means Germany is estimated to see the lowest year-on-year drop among these six markets.
Read the full Germany article.
In contrast Q1 and Q4 are the weakest two quarters in Mexico, which makes the loss of Q2 (the strongest quarter) and restrictions in Q3 potentially all the more damaging.
Read the full Mexico article.
As in Mexico, the Domestic market’s loss of Q2 could be a significant blow.
Read the full Domestic article.
Australia saw its strongest quarter (Q1) cut slightly short, potentially putting a lot of pressure on the remainder of the year.
Read the full Australia article.
Q4 is traditionally the strongest quarter by a good margin, while the lost Q2 would normally run weakest, offering some hope in Spain.
Read the full Spain article.
Like Spain, Q4 is traditionally the strongest and Q2 the weakest in UK/Ireland, although the overall quarterly split is more even-handed. Still, with Q4 offering a new Bond film, always a strong UK box office driver, the market may be in better shape than some.
Read the full UK/Ireland article.