Led by families, interest in 3D is plummeting among U.S. consumers

sony-active-3d-glasses

Detailed in The Hollywood Reporter this week, attendance of 3D versions of films is dropping due to exceedingly high ticket prices and a lack of interest from the average American family. For example, the percentage of revenue that comes from 3D versions of Pixar films has fallen dramatically over the last two years. When Toy Story 3 was released, the opening weekend box office take was over sixty percent 3D viewings and the 3D revenue from the entire run was responsible for 56 percent of all revenue. Moving ahead in time, 3D revenue from the opening weekend of Cars 2 was 40 percent of the total revenue. Even more recently, 3D viewings during the opening weekend of Brave only accounted for 32 percent of all revenue.

Ice-Age-4-Contiental-DriftBeyond Pixar, Dreamworks Animation is seeing a similar trend. 3D viewings of Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted only accounted for 38 percent of the revenue collected during the opening weekend. Likely one of the main contributing factors, families are losing interest in 3D movies due to rising ticket prices.

At the AMC River East 21 in Chicago, the cost to view Ice Age: Continental Drift in 3D during a Saturday matinee runs $52 for the average family of four. Prices vary across the United States as well. At the AMC Loews Lincoln Square 13  in New York City, the same viewing is $65. At the AMC Studio 30 in Kansas, the price would be about $44. If a family of four chooses the 2D version of the film instead, they will reduce the total cost by 25 to 40 percent depending on the theater.

According to a 2011 study of theatrical market statistics conducted by the MPAA, box office revenue from 3D movies dropped by $400 million between 2010 and 2011. Despite the number of digital 3D screens in the United States increasing by 50 percent and the number of 3D films released increasing by nearly 75 percent, movies studios took in 18 percent less revenue than 2010. However, domestic revenue during 2012 is at an all time high. This is being supported by attendance of 2D movies such as action blockbusters like The Avengers and The Hunger Games as well as comedies like Ted and 21 Jump Street.

AvatarFor the moment, it appears that the movie industry is relying on extreme fans of comic book films and action movies to prop up 3D ticket sales in the United States. In addition,  studios are having better luck with 3D in markets such as China, Brazil and Russia. The release of the next three Avatar films is also expected to be a boon for 3D technology as 3D revenue from that box office release topped 85 percent of all revenue.

However, the first Avatar sequel won’t be released until 2014 and the draining interest in 3D films at the box office is already having an impact on the sales of 3D televisions. According to a recent study conducted by the NPD, only 14 percent of U.S. consumers consider 3D to be a vital feature that will motivate them to upgrade their existing HDTV in the next six months. Even more recent, DirecTV announced plans to scale back on 3D content development due to a general lack of interest from subscribers. 

Movies & TV

‘Venom’ devours the box office competition with monstrous second weekend

Sony Pictures anti-superhero movie Venom won the weekend box office for the second straight week, beating musical drama A Star is Born, as well as three new releases that made it into the weekend's top ten movies.
Movies & TV

MoviePass saga: Parent company investigated for allegedly misleading investors

Troubled subscription-based movie service MoviePass is making headlines on a daily basis lately, and not in a good way. Here's a timeline of events for the company once described as Netflix for movie theaters.
Smart Home

Amazon Echo vs. Echo Plus: Which should you get?

If you're trying to choose between the Amazon Echo or the Echo Plus, then this guide is for you. It compares the two Alexa-enabled speakers in cost, size, looks, functionality, and more.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Home Theater

Throw away those EarPods -- we dug up the best headphones in every style

Trolling the internet for hours to find headphones is no way to live. Instead, leverage our expertise and experience to find the best headphones for you. Here are our 10 favorites.
Smart Home

SiriusXM, Amazon team up for two Echo Dot deals with freebies

Amazon and SiriusXM partnered on two joint promotions. New SiriusXM subscribers can receive a free Amazon Echo Dot. People who already own an Echo device can sign up for new SiriusXM subscription with the first three months free.
Product Review

Google’s third HD Chromecast is still a good streamer, but its value is slipping

At Google’s October event, we saw a slew of new products, but the new third-generation Chromecast didn’t even make it onstage. We spent some time with the incrementally upgraded, third-generation HD Chromecast to see if it’s worth…
Music

Bolster your HD music catalog with the best high-res audio sites

Music connoisseurs relish HD audio, but scouring the web for all the best streaming and downloading sites can be a pain. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Check out our list, and let the high-resolution good times roll.
Home Theater

Lynxsonic’s 4:33 headphones offer premium features at a not-so-premium price

If you're looking for a set of wireless headphones that has a similar feature set to Bose's QuietComfort 35 but with a lower price, the Lynxsonic 4:33 is an intriguing new contender on Kickstarter.
Home Theater

Demystify home audio with our ultimate A/V receiver buying guide

Today's A/V receivers are packed with lots of advanced technology and just plain cool features. From understanding watt ratings to Wi-Fi, we explain how to buy one that will last you for years in our ultimate A/V receiver buying guide.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Home Theater

Google Chromecast and Chromecast Ultra: Everything you need to know

Google's Chromecast plugs into your TV's HDMI port, allowing you to stream content from your tablet, laptop, or smartphone directly to your TV. Here's what you need to know about all iterations, including the 4K-ready Chromecast Ultra.
Home Theater

The best noise-canceling headphones paint your music on a cleaner canvas

Drowning out the sound of babies, jet engines, and the outside world isn't as hard as it seems. Here are the best noise-canceling headphones, whether you're concerned with style, comfort, or sound.
Home Theater

The seven best TVs you can buy right now, from budget to big screen

Looking for a new television? In an oversaturated market, buying power is at an all-time high, but you'll need to cut through the rough to find a diamond. We're here to help with our picks for the best TVs of 2018.