CinemaCon: Worldwide Box Office Up 4% in 2013

by Ray Subers
Iron Man 3 led the way with over $1.2 billion.

March 25, 2014

At industry gathering CinemaCon in Las Vegas, NATO and the MPAA unveiled their annual industry report, which featured aggregate data about 2013 box office. The report shows that worldwide box office increased four percent to $35.9 billion, which is a new record.

Most of that was driven by overseas growth: the international box office was up five percent to $25 billion. The international box office now accounts for 70 percent of worldwide earnings, which is up from 64 percent in 2009.

The biggest market is now China, which accounted for $3.6 billion (up 25 percent from last year). Other major markets were Japan ($2.4 billion), the U.K. ($1.7 billion), France ($1.6 billion) and India ($1.5 billion). In comparison, over $10.9 billion worth of tickets were sold at the domestic box office in 2013.

While there was much noise about the decline of 3D in 2013—some of which came from this very publication—the overall trend wasn't that bad. Domestic box office from 3D showings declined by one percent in 2013; in comparison, overall sales were up one percent.

The report includes extensive information about frequent moviegoers in the U.S., broken down by demographics. It defines frequent moviegoers as those who go to movie theaters at least once a month: while they're only 11 percent of the population, they represent 50 percent of sales in 2013.

One noteworthy tidbit: frequent movie-going among 12-39 year-olds decreased 16 percent from 2012 to 2013. Still, while 12-39 year-olds only represent 38 percent of the population, they still accounted for 58 percent of frequent moviegoers.

Also, while Hispanics are only 17 percent of the population, they make up 32 percent of frequent moviegoers. In comparison, Caucasians are 63 percent of the population but only 49 percent of frequent moviegoers.

The biggest states in the U.S. are California (7.41 million frequent moviegoers), Texas (4.31 million), Florida (1.69 million), New York (1.51 million) and Illinois (1.49 million).

Another interesting note highlighted by Senator Chris Dodd, head of the MPAA: 74 percent of frequent moviegoers own at least four types of technology products. In comparison, only 51 percent of the total adult population own that many. This suggests that technology actually increases moviegoing, as opposed to the other way around. As Dodd noted in a press conference, there's "a false choice between technology and content."

Also revealed during the press conference: NATO (the National Association of Theater Owners) is planning to experiment with discounted ticket prices on Tuesdays. This is something that's already being done in Canada and Latin America, among other areas. The goal of this would be to fill empty weekday seats with more cost-conscious consumers who either can't or won't afford typical evening prices. NATO is working on securing a state to test in, but wouldn't announce further details.

Discuss this story with fellow Box Office Mojo fans on Facebook. On Twitter, follow us at @boxofficemojo, and follow author Ray Subers at @raysubers.

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