This year, Hollywood movies suffered an extraordinary 80% slump in box office revenue in North America in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic which closed movie theaters and studios held back the release of scores of new films.
Research firm Comscoresaid that the North American box office brought in $2.2 billion in 2020, compared with $11.4 billion for 2019.
As per the reports, the 2020 income marked an almost 40-year low, as per the historical data from Box Office Mojo. The lowest previous take for North American box office receipts was 1981, with a total of $918 million, in a year when Superman II was the biggest film.
So far, Comscore did not release international data for 2020, but Variety said global returns slumped some 71%.
The contagion forced movie theaters to close around the world in mid-March, bringing some small and big chains like AMC Entertainment to the edge of bankruptcy. Theaters have still to reopen in the biggest U.S. markets of Los Angeles and New York City.
Comscore also revealed that some 274 movies like; No Time to Die, Top Gun: Maverick, and the ninth Fast and Furious action film, were moved to 2021 release dates.
That left Sony Pictures cop caper Bad Boys for Life, released in January 2020, as the top-earning movie in North America for 2020 with $206 million. In 2019, Avengers: Endgame ruled the domestic box office with $858 million.
Thriller Tenet from Warner Bros, which hoped to tempt movie-goers back into theaters in the summer, took in just $58 million in the U.S. and Canada.
Paul Dergarabedian, the senior media analyst with Comscore, said that 2020 revenue – much of it from drive-in sites – was grounds for hope given that some industry observers had feared the figure would be even smaller.
Dergarabedian said; that should be extremely encouraging to anyone who was worried that movie-going would not come back at all.