This Week on the Boxoffice Podcast: Cinema Week to Engage Audiences with the Moviegoing Experience

This week on the Boxoffice Podcast, co-hosts Daniel Loria, Rebecca Pahle, and Shawn Robbins break down a busy news week—including announcements from Disney CEO Bob Chapek in the studio’s most recent investor call, developments from WarnerMedia, and speculation that Amazon may buy a major Hollywood studio. In addition, Robbins breaks down the opening weekend box office of Spiral and and how recent schedule changes from Disney could affect the summer box office.

In the episode’s main feature, the co-organizers of Cinema Week—an event taking place from June 22 to 27, designed to reignite moviegoers’ love of the cinema—speak about their aims for the inaugural cinema celebration.

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Brandon Jones on the Origin of Cinema Week

We’ve been in the exhibitor marketing space for a long time. And we really wanted to focus on, “How do we do something that the entire industry could rally around?” And we were really inspired by a few things. The Independent Cinema Allianceput together an event in January 2020, right before the pandemic, called Love Local Cinema. And we saw things like The Great American Takeout and Restaurant Week and American Express Shop Small. So as we were investigating those initiatives, we really thought, “What does that look like in the movie theater space? Well, let’s do something like a cinema week.” We went through an entire naming convention, and we really just fell back to “Cinema Week.” It says what it is. It’s a moment to rally around both from an exhibition standpoint, and “How do you make that your own and activate that in your theaters?” And also, how do we get support from studios? And how do we get support from vendors and people who rely on moviegoing as their livelihood?

Melissa Boudreau on Creative Cinema Marketing

I think it’s telling your story about your chain, or what you’re doing in your community. We have some partners that have been open for 100 years, and they’re local and community-focused. And I think that sometimes consumers don’t understand that. They think that every theater chain is this huge conglomerate. And there’s nothing wrong with that, either. But telling your story—Why is your location special? What amenities do you offer? Do you have heated recliners? Do you offer beer and wine? What special things are people experiencing in your location? And then, in Cinema Week, really elevating those experiences. Can you set up just a red carpet and make it feel really special and have someone greeting all of the guests at the door? What are these little things that can really elevate the experience and make it feel special?

Rich Daughtridge on Working with Your Community

A little bit of tough love for a second:. We’re so used to the studios marketing the films, and people show up. I think this pandemic has forced exhibitors to think differently, to think smarter, about marketing. But also to do a little lifting at the same time. Call your local radio station, give them the templates that Cinema Week will have on their website, and just ask for a PSA. Go to the newspaper. Go to all the local media outlets and do some of that lifting. I think that’s a little bit of a challenge to the industry, because we’re not used to doing that a little bit.


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