STEVEN SPIELBERG: The Movie Industry Is About To Implode

spock star trek into darkness

Steven Spielberg and George Lucas made some startling comments at USC yesterday, David Cohen of Variety reports.

The two movie moguls said the movie industry is about to implode.

What’s happening, Spielberg and Lucas said, is that Hollywood is betting ever more heavily on a handful of massive-budget general-interest blockbusters each year, while losing the regular movie-going audience to the Internet and TV.

And soon, Spielberg predicted, some of these humongous bets will blow up, demolishing the industry:

“They’re  going for the gold,” said Lucas of the studios. “But that isn’t going to work forever. And as a result they’re getting narrower and narrower in their focus. People are going to get tired of it. They’re not going to know how to do anything else.”

Spielberg noted that because so many forms of entertainment are competing for attention, [the studios] would rather spend $250 million on a single film than make several personal, quirky projects.

“There’s eventually going to be a big meltdown,” Spielberg said. “There’s going to be an implosion where three or four or maybe even a half-dozen of these mega-budgeted movies go crashing into the ground and that’s going to change the paradigm again.”

Lucas predicts that the movie-theatre industry will soon evolve into something like Broadway, where huge blockbuster movies are shown for long periods on huge screens and tickets cost fantastic amounts of money:

Lucas predicted that after that meltdown, “You’re going to end up with fewer theatres, bigger theatres with a lot of nice things. Going to the movies will cost 50 bucks or 100 or 150 bucks, like what Broadway costs today, or a football game. It’ll be an expensive thing. … (The movies) will sit in the theatres for a year, like a Broadway show does. That will be called the ‘movie’ business.”

“There’ll be big movies on a big screen, and it’ll cost them a lot of money. Everything else will be on a small screen. It’s almost that way now. ‘Lincoln’ and ‘Red Tails’ barely got into theatres. You’re talking about Steven Spielberg and George Lucas can’t get their movies into theatres.”

So that’s the future of the movie industry, according to two of the most successful directors and producers in history.

But don’t go crying for Hollywood. There’s still plenty of money in making movies and series for smaller screens. And the proliferation of on-demand services over the Internet is making these movies and series easier to see than ever.

And don’t go crying for consumers, either. The quicker the traditional movie industry breaks down, the quicker you’ll be able to see the movies you want to watch be available on your own personal screens–instead of having to schlep to a dirty cramped theatre, paying through the nose, and then having an obstructed or sideways view.

Read about the demise of the movie industry at Variety >

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