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How do cinemas work?

WarHog

Member
I know it sounds a daft question, but...

When they show a film does part of each ticket sale go to the film makers/investors?
Do all of the takings go to the film makers, with the cinemas getting a flat fee per showing?
Do the cinemas have to pay the film makers to show the film?
Who decides how long a film remains at a particular cinema?
etc etc....
 

SteveAWOL

Distinguished Member
According to this film data researcher, the cinema and distributor will split ticket revenue at around 50/50 for big releases in their opening week; which might explain why Odeon charge a “blockbuster tax” of up to £2 per ticket on new releases to mitigate against that.

The distributor’s cut of ticket sales will then drop by about 5% for each subsequent week of release, until it reaches 30%.

Independent movie distributors apparently only get about a 35% cut of ticket sales.

 

bruce-leroy

Distinguished Member
I imagine they rely a lot on food and drink for the revenue.
 

richp007

Distinguished Member
Food and drink are a huge part of keeping a cinema going. The prices are so ridiculous, as after a few weeks of a film showing it's not actually profitable for the cinema to keep showing the film anymore.

I think some of you guys who go back for seconds and thirds actually keep cinemas going :laugh: As even if you're using a Limitless card or whatever they're called, you might still be buying food and drink every time you go. Or certainly many will be.
 

Sloppy Bob

Member
I remember reading for the new Star Wars movies for the first week or two the distributor got 100% of the ticket sales meaning the cinema only made anything out the concession stand.
 

SteveAWOL

Distinguished Member
I remember reading for the new Star Wars movies for the first week or two the distributor got 100% of the ticket sales meaning the cinema only made anything out the concession stand.
The articles I've found suggest a 65% cut of ticket revenue to Disney for opening fortnight of Last Jedi (up from 64% for Force Awakens) plus exclusivity of largest multiplex screens and a 5% penalty if exhibitor deviates from any of their clauses.

 

rustybin

Distinguished Member
I'm a relatively heavy cinema goer, but they must hate me. I go 2-4 times a month, depending on what's out. Mostly on a Tues / Wed with Meerkat and student discount. Last night 4 of us went to see Underwater and it cost £17.90 in total. Walked in with a can of Pepsi from home and a small packet of sweets I bought in Tesco next door to the cinema 5 minutes before hand.
 
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richp007

Distinguished Member
I'm a relatively heavy cinema goer, but they must hate me. I go 2-4 times a month, depending on what's out. Mostly on a Tues / Wed with Meerkat and student discount. Last night 4 of went to see Underwater and it cost £17.90 in total. Walked in with a can of Pepsi from home and a small packet of sweets I bought in Tesco next door to the cinema 5 minutes before hand.
Therein lies the problem. Not you I mean :laugh: but the price. It's £16 (or thereabouts) for a single ticket in my nearest Odeon Luxe for an iSense or IMAX screening. For a group it's an obscene amount if you want food etc on top.
 

MarkyPancake

Distinguished Member
On top of this, I wondered how monthly passes, like Cineworld Unlimited, factors into the box office takings and split of who gets paid.
 

Vila

Well-known Member
Therein lies the problem. Not you I mean :laugh: but the price. It's £16 (or thereabouts) for a single ticket in my nearest Odeon Luxe for an iSense or IMAX screening. For a group it's an obscene amount if you want food etc on top.


I can't think of many places you can go and enjoy entertainment for 2 hours and spend less.

I'd certainly spend that if I went to a pub for 2 hours.
 

Tom Davies

Formerly 'Malingo'
I'm a relatively heavy cinema goer, but they must hate me. I go 2-4 times a month, depending on what's out. Mostly on a Tues / Wed with Meerkat and student discount. Last night 4 of us went to see Underwater and it cost £17.90 in total. Walked in with a can of Pepsi from home and a small packet of sweets I bought in Tesco next door to the cinema 5 minutes before hand.
You're killing cinemas! You're a monster!

But seriously, if everyone did that every time the cinema would close so maybe throw them a bone every now and then and buy a 7up(other soft drinks are available...but not as good)
 

SteveAWOL

Distinguished Member
You're killing cinemas! You're a monster!

But seriously, if everyone did that every time the cinema would close so maybe throw them a bone every now and then and buy a 7up(other soft drinks are available...but not as good)
A couple of my Unlimited buddies will always purchase snacks from nearby Tesco Express before we watch a film (sometimes they even sneak in a McDonald’s!) and have probably never spent a penny in the actual multiplex; well apart from using the toilet!

Like yourself, I’ll at least purchase a drink (we get 25% discount as Unlimited Black card holders which makes price more palatable) to contribute something towards the staff’s wages. As it does feel like I’m taking the Mickey otherwise, considering how many hours of entertainment we get for £18.40 a month plus the IMAX with Laser & Superscreen provide me with a cinematic experience I’d struggle to recreate at home even if I spent £thousands.

 

richp007

Distinguished Member
I can't think of many places you can go and enjoy entertainment for 2 hours and spend less.

I'd certainly spend that if I went to a pub for 2 hours.
The problem is though if I want to take my niece and nephew to see something I'm easily looking at £50+ everything in. Just to watch a film.

This is why I try and support my local community cinema as much as possible. It's be more like £20-25 as their food and tickets are cheaper.
 

mike7

Well-known Member
With the two largest chains cutting ticket prices to around £5 to entice customers away from smaller outfits they are biting into their profits to do so. A greater part of cinema income comes from the sale of food and drink, not the film revenue. Now that technology has taken over there is no need for projector operators or ticket sellers so the staff are simply there to take money for beverages.

I have never understood why people feel the need to be continuously feeding themselves whilst watching a movie, but they do and cinema owners bank on this. Not content with a simple snack, ice cream or drink some offer hot food which stinks. It really puts me off going much these days. I went recently and a 'senior' lady a few seats away was noisily munching her way through a bag of popcorn for nearly an hour. Picturehouse used to put on popcorn-free screenings, but have abandoned the idea as people sneaked stuff in. If I want to eat out I go to a restaurant.
 

rustybin

Distinguished Member
You're killing cinemas! You're a monster!

But seriously, if everyone did that every time the cinema would close so maybe throw them a bone every now and then and buy a 7up(other soft drinks are available...but not as good)
For the 'bigger' movies I do go to town.

Skywalker cost me a fortune. Beer, popcorn and premium seating. Must have spent £35.
 

domtheone

Distinguished Member
You have to feel for cinemas a tad given the film companies get such a huge slice of the pie.

Disney aint exactly short of a bob or 2, so they could easily drop their %%.

Edit: I don't do food any more for cinema viewings.

1, it's loud and annoying. 2, the price is obscene.
 

rustybin

Distinguished Member
My local doesn't give a monkeys about bringing in your own food and drink. When I take my older kids (4, 5), I regularly take a pair of Happy Meals or a packed lunch and they don't bat an eyelid.
 

wongataa

Well-known Member
Cinemas are fine with people taking in cold food & drinks. They tend not to like it if you take in your own hot food.
 

Vila

Well-known Member
I went recently and a 'senior' lady a few seats away was noisily munching her way through a bag of popcorn for nearly an hour. Picturehouse used to put on popcorn-free screenings, but have abandoned the idea as people sneaked stuff in. If I want to eat out I go to a restaurant.
Imagine eating popcorn in the cinema, how little consideration these Philistine's have.
 

Greg Hook

Moderator & Reviewer
It made me chuckle in Cineworld on Sunday. Due to the sugar tax the tango ice blast has gone and been replaced with something else due to the amount of sugar.

That's fine, but when I picked up my sugar reduced drink, they gave me a free gift of a pack of popping candy.

So basically here is your low sugar drink, have a free pack of sugar with it. :laugh:
 

Tom Davies

Formerly 'Malingo'
Now, now.
I get the annoyance with rustling and whathaveyou but I also love seeing something in a packed house, rustles and coughs and all. I just like the atmosphere.

What I can't stand is phone screens. I'm pretty sure if we bring back capital punishment it will be for having your phone out in a cinema.
 

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