NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

A new era in the movie industry

There was a time where Arnold Schwarzenegger was the biggest action movie star in Hollywood. Star Wars was the hottest movie franchise around and watching movies in the theater made your experience unimaginable.

Nowadays, we are still getting Star Wars movies over 30 years later, movie stars have come and gone, and there is no longer a need to go to the theater. The Movie and TV show industry has drastically changed over the years.

One way they’ve been different is their constant need to remake every movie and TV show out there.

Whether they create a spin-off of the original idea, repurpose it into an animated or live action movie or series, or just flat out remake the movie with a different cast. Hollywood will stop at nothing to keep a franchise alive for all generations.

Part of the reason for this is because the audience plays a major role in the direction of movies. The franchises that were created and loved have an already existing fan base, where as completely new movies have no audience.

According to a study by Stephen Follows back in 2015, the budget for a film based on an existing premise is $70.8 million, while a brand new film is $46.4 million.

In fact, according to the same study by Stephen Follows, sequels and prequels now make up nearly a third of all top-grossing films. However, is that necessarily a bad thing?

I interviewed NECC student Andrew Venditti, a fan of film who had very interesting opinions on the matter.

When asked if he felt that Hollywood is lacking in creativity, Venditti said “I think Hollywood could use some more unique stories. I like superhero movies as much as the next guy, but they get a little stale in my opinion.”

I also asked him if there would need to be a limit on remakes when it comes to certain franchises or any movie in general, He responded by saying “I think some remakes are really good. On the other hand, if remakes and stretching out movie franchises sell really well, there might be less profit incentive to make new material.”

So while there are certainly good and bad remakes, where you watch them is an entirely new thing.

Instead of buying a ticket at your local movie theater, people now would much prefer watching the movie at home.

While the pandemic has not helped with ticket sales, theaters have been in decline for a long time now. According to Paul Hardart, director of the Entertainment, Media and Technology Program at New York University’s Stern School of Business, movie theater attendance was plateauing even before COVID 19.

However, ticket prices have nearly doubled, going from $5.39 in 2000 to $9.16 in 2020. Now, there are all kinds of streaming services like Netflix, Paramount + and others that make watching movies more convenient in the comforts of home.

Movies and TV shows have been more or less the same, but watching them has evolved over the years. While we’re not sure what franchise they will duplicate next, we hope that it will be just as good as the original.