In an Uncertain Future for Theaters, Owners’ Faith in Moviegoing Remains Strong

CinemaCon 2024: Execs say industry fundamentals are still sound but they still don’t know how many films Hollywood will bring to their screens

CinemaCon 2024
(Chris Smith/TheWrap)

In 2021, movie theaters faced the long struggle of reopening after a yearlong pandemic shut down. Then 2022 brought months-long box office slumps from COVID-19 production delays, and 2023 brought the strikes.

In 2024, are exhibitors out of the woods?

Larry Etter, SVP of Malco Theaters in Tennessee, said he’s not going to try to predict the future after the curveball of six months of Hollywood labor stoppages.

“In the first half of 2023, we were seeing a significant increase in business at our theaters compared to 2022, and we were making some pretty ambitious plans based off of that, but then movies got delayed because of the strikes and we had to pull back,” Etter told TheWrap.


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