Sat. Feb 24th, 2024

In the past decade, we’ve seen many different types of industries evolve and change. Whether it’d be a more digital age, or a shift from what things “used to be” — no matter what it seems, the entertainment industry continues to shift with the times. The entertainment industry has seen massive growth since 2011, with social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook seeing unprecedented usage, while other parts of the industry such as movie theaters saw shocking drops in frequent attendance. As of June 2019, according to Statista, only 14% of people frequently went to a movie theater more than once a month, which is insane to think about, considering the many titles that have come out throughout the decade.  Now that we’ve looked at the past, what about the future? What is there for the next decade, or even twenty to  thirty years? 

Looking to the future, one thing comes to mind. What will be the future of movie theaters? Do we see it already becoming outdated in the meteoric rise of streaming services, or do we have yet another invention that will trump the modern day streaming that we have today and seemingly resurrect theater attendance? That is a question yet to be answered, but looking ahead, I have some ideas. I think that we will see a continual decrease in movie theater screenings as the digital age continues to explode into the skies of economic heaven, but at the same time, I see this delving more into the virtual reality (VR) side of things as well. Why not add streaming services to the already advanced technology of VR and make it a true movie experience, as if you were in the movie? 

Nevertheless, technology gives us greater power to make the movie-going experience greater than ever before. VR can be a gateway to make streaming and movie-going experiences that we would all remember even better than what it used to be. As much as we all want that same experience to be the way it was pre-COVID, the experience will not be as it was and never will be again due to the shutdowns, and due to the fact that we have adapted to the way we have lived for the past year. The entertainment industry has grown astronomically in the past decade, and it is only projected to go even higher with the rise of streaming, electronic sports and sites such as Twitch. Nevertheless, even with the pandemic seeing a clear end to the lockdowns we have all dealt with, the entertainment that we all know and love will return and will still continue to evolve into even greater forms of it: both at home and out in towns and cities. As other industries have come and gone, the entertainment industry has outlasted them all and will continue to do so in the decades and centuries to come.

Jeff Babcock is a fourth-year student majoring in communications and minoring in journalism. 

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