Why do the French go to the cinema less often? A study carried out by Vertigo for the CNC tried to answer the question and to expose solutions for a reconquest of the public.
On May 23, the CNC unveiled a study edifying effect carried out by the Vertigo institute around cinema attendance.
The idea of this study was to understand why the French go less often to the cinema. Thus, the National Center of Cinematography took advantage of the Cannes Film Festival to highlight this assessment.
One year after the reopening of theaters following the health crisis, this study also had 3 identified goals:
- Understand why cinema attendance has not returned to its pre-crisis level at this stage
- Identify the obstacles according to the different types of audiences
- Put into perspective the main obstacles mentioned to identify the levers for winning back the public
According to BoxOfficeProwhich relayed the CNC study, “The Vertigo Institute conducted a survey to identify both the profile of spectators returning to the theater, and what could have slowed down their habits.
Because if the reopening of May 2021 saw a massive influx of spectators, since then the market has only taken off on the occasion of a few upturns, from the Film Festival in July to the Spider-Man: No Way Home phenomenon at the end of the year, through school holidays and Dying can wait.
However, this shows the capacity of the public to mobilize according to the offer, as the director of cinema of the CNC, Magali Valente, underlined. “In July 2021, we reached a level that was close to that of 2019” and we must take into account the strong health constraints still in force which marked the past year to put the level of entries into perspective.
The start of 2022 is indeed following a slightly more optimistic trend: 42% behind in January compared to January 2019, attendance “recovered” to -23% in April, the first full month without health restrictions.
the CNC also recalls that France, with a 55% drop in attendance in 2021 compared to 2019 (and -28% compared to 2017-2019 since May 19, 2021), remains the leading European country in terms of attendance, especially in comparison with the United Kingdom (-58%), Germany (-65%), or Italy (-75%).
The study thus shows that 48% of French people say they have returned less often or not at all to the cinema since the reopening of theaters on May 19, 2021.
More specifically, “statistics confirm the findings made in 2021, namely that young people have returned to the cinema more easily than those aged 60 and over and that a part of the working population, the 25-59 year olds, have not returned to his attendance habits before the health crisis.
Indeed, nearly 5 out of 10 spectators have not returned to their pre-Covid habits (+25-59 years). The study also shows that this decline in attendance is linked to a combination of factors, some of which are temporary and others more structural.
Thus, the five main reasons why spectators say they go to the cinema less often, or not at all, since the reopening of cinemas, are:
- For 38% of them, a loss of habit of going to the cinema
- For 36% of them, the perception of the ticket price
- For 33% of them, wearing a mask
- For 26% of them, the preference for watching films on other media
- For 23% of them, the lack of interest in the films on offer”
Still according to the CNC, “the study highlights the fact that, if the main reasons are the same for all age groups, they occur in a different order according to the categories of the population:
- for 15-34 year olds, preference for other mediums prevails (36%)
- for 35-59 year olds, it is the perception of high ticket prices that takes first place (46%)
- for those aged 60 and over, loss of habit is cited first (51%).
The study is also rich in lessons on the levers of action available to actors in the sector and the public authorities, when it analyzes the motivations of spectators who have returned to the habit of going to the cinema:
- it was first and foremost, quite simply, the desire to see a film that prevailed (51%)
- followed by interest in the optimal sound, image and comfort conditions offered by the cinema (37%)
- are cited immediately after the desire to spend a collective moment with friends, family or as a couple (36%)
- then that of enjoying a hobby that takes you out of your home and breaks up the daily routine (34%).”
“France remains the 1st European country in terms of attendance and the sluggishness observed since the reopening of cinemas is not inevitable! Cinema will never disappear from cinemas!
Professionals, with the support of the CNC, are already working on ways to bring spectators back to the theaters in a more massive way and the study that we are disclosing today is rich in lessons for action.affirmed Dominique Boutonnat, president of the CNC.