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The moviegoing experience and all forms of live entertainment have been drastically altered in the past year. The rise of Covid-19 has forced individuals to social distance and companies to shut down temporarily.

That includes the movie theater industry, which has been heavily and negatively affected by the pandemic. Independent theaters are struggling right now, but even larger companies like AMC have been forced to furlough their employees. 

As a whole, ticket sales dropped by a whopping 80 percent in 2020. It’s almost unfathomable to imagine ticket sales that low – but that is the reality that Covid-19 brought with it. 

Drastic Pushbacks

One tactic for theater survival comes from the filmmakers themselves. In 2020, Disney pushed back nearly all of its films (the notable exception being Mulan) by an entire year. They’re not the only ones pushing back release dates – Universal was quick to follow this practice for their anticipated blockbusters (Fast and Furious, No Time To Die).

Marvel’s Black Widow has been forced back several times at this point, with all hopes pinning on a safer climate for a May 2021 release. In turn, this is shifting the entire Marvel catalog – that’s no secret.

Alternative Experiences

There are plenty of alternatives out there, all of which would allow for a moviegoing experience – albeit an altered one. The rise of streaming media has changed the name of the game, and it has grown exponentially in popularity.

There are alternatives out there for those that prefer the experience of a large screen to enjoy. There’s always the option of tracking down a drive-in theater. While they had been dwindling, 2020 has seen a resurgence of sorts for this dying platform. How much time this bought the drive-in industry is anyone’s guess.

The Positive Side of Things

Pushing back release dates and filming has resulted in a significant gap in time, not just for theaters but also in the production world. There’s less filming going on, leaving the creative minds behind blockbusters with free time – time that they’re not typically used to having.

In October, the Los Angeles Times released an expose discussing the sudden uptick in the acquisition of adaptation rights. Directors, producers, writers, and other creatives have been forced to spend more time at home thanks to the pandemic. In turn, they’ve begun picking up more media to consume.

They turned to media such as books, comics, and games. Suddenly there’s a new explosion in interest from this field, and the result is that more people are trying to obtain rights than ever before. Naturally, acquiring the rights does not automatically mean that it will come to fruition. Or that it is in progress at all – these things take time. It does mean that movies and shows are lined up farther back than ever, and there is plenty of fresh inspiration to be found. We could just be facing a media revolution.