Movie Theaters lose customers, risk closing


Reuse: The impact of streaming services and Covid are leading to empty movie theaters across the country from the lack of moviegoers.

You can hardly wait to see the newly released movie with your friends. There is no line, so you settle down eager to kick back and enjoy a new release. You receive a warm huge buttery popcorn, your M&Ms, Kit Kats, Twizzlers, cookies, and soda. However, you’re not in a reclining chair at the movie theater; you’re on your couch. 

Many movie theaters around the nation, including the second biggest chain in the world, are starting to have major financial issues as they are beginning to become less popular. Movie studios simply stream their films to streaming sites instead of delivering them to movie theaters, making it convenient for viewers to watch movies from the comfort of their home. 

Movies like Top Gun have encouraged more people to return to movie theaters but despite this movie theaters are still having trouble maintaining consistant customers.
(Olivia Signorile ’25 )

Movie theaters like Cineworld and Regal Cinemas have declared bankruptcy, blaming the pandemic and a lack of new movies. Major hits like “Top Gun” and “Spider Man: No Way Home” encouraged viewers to go back to the movies. Yet, despite this success, Cineworld reports that their company is having problems; one or two big movies can’t save the future of theaters.

“Despite a gradual recovery of demand since reopening in April 2021, recent admission levels have been below expectations,” according to  Cineworld said. “These lower levels of admissions are due to a limited film slate that is anticipated to continue until November 2022 and are expected to negatively impact trading and the group’s liquidity position in the near term.”

“I think that they are taking some of our business and some movies come out straight to streaming,” Trevor Thomas, a local employee of AMC Royale 6 in Norwalk, said. “So there’s no point in coming to the theaters to watch the movie.”

Movie Theaters across America are experiencing impacts from the lack of people attending theaters. (Olivia Signorile ’25)

Many individuals came to realize how much simpler it is to see a movie in the convenience of your own home as opposed to traveling and paying for a ticket at a theater.

— Olivia Signorile '25

“I think streaming services definitely affected movie theaters because now people are able to watch a movie whenever they want rather than schedule a time to go to a movie,” Emma Kantor ’25 said. 

There isn’t much that movie theaters can do to improve with these challenges in their way, but they can hold out hope for the future.



“Theaters and studios are holding out hope that a handful of upcoming releases could become breakout hits.” Los Angeles Times said. “Those include “The Woman King,” TriStar’s historical action drama starring Viola Davis; “Don’t Worry Darling,” a Warner Bros. thriller directed by Olivia Wilde.”