6 cinema trends to watch out for in 2023

Omoleye Omoruyi
Cinema trends for 2023
Cinema trends for 2023

We close off 2022 with a host of cinema trends in Nigeria, including a persistent preference for Hollywood over Nollywood, notwithstanding the ticket rates, except for a few times. But, the Nigerian film industry continues to evolve, and filmmakers are becoming more inclined to technological trends in production and distribution.

Except that Nigeria will be left out of the global embracement and advancement of AI, VR and other technologies for a long time. 

Yet, these are the cinema trends we should expect in 2023: 

Here are 6 cinema trends to watch out for in 2023

Cinema attendance will stay because it is a hobby

People will spend more leisure time watching movies than they do now. It slowed down a bit due to the pandemic and a rise in streaming options. But, a rise in cinema attendance has been a prediction for years, with some predicting that we’ll see a decline in the number of films made each year. 

However, Nigerians do not go to cinemas only for the films – even as ticket costs continue to rise. It is the experience and the opportunities for networking that encourage people to go. 

I mean, going to a movie theatre is a social event and people like seeing movies with other people in a movie theatre – just like football viewing centres. And now that COVID-19 has left the hearts of many Nigerians, social gatherings will rise, including cinema attendance. No holds barred, you will say. 

However…

Home viewing will rise

It is possible that with the threat of disease and the move to healthier lifestyles, people will spend more time at home watching movies. More people will watch movies at home. We predict some will ditch bars and restaurants and spend more of their leisure time watching movies at home.

Home viewing will rise ahead of cinema attendance

The 2022 drop [in cinema attendance] is an all-time low despite the industry’s seemingly stable streak in the last five years. Year in, year out, the industry had flirted with about 40% market share while Hollywood held a large chunk of the remaining 60% –

‘The Industry’

New-face filmmakers will become more daring

The last couple of years has shown that Nigerians will still love the film if the acting is top-notch. But, newbies in the filmmaking business are beginning to understand that the presentation of the storyline besides the acting is cardinal. They are studying the social media space widely enough to understand the movie behaviour of Nigerians. 

Besides, they know how to maximise production budgets by keeping costs down. And they understand how to build audiences using their social media skills. This helps to reduce the risks of their projects flopping. The abundance of streamers means a marketplace for their films too. In case cinemas say no to their ‘cock and bull’. 

cinema trends to watch out for in 2023

Newbies are also expert disruptors and innovators, which means they can readily adapt to all of the technological changes and shifting distribution developments.

Yet…

Cinemas will struggle to outdo digital distribution

As we move into the next decade, the movie industry will continue to evolve. Most films will likely be released digitally before being shown in cinemas.

According to ‘The Industry’, a quarterly report on the Nigerian movie business published by Inside Nollywood, the Nigerian movie industry has recorded an all-time low in cinema viewership.

Using available data, the publication puts Nollywood’s market share in cinemas at 25.8%, down from the 39.3% held in the first half of 2021.

It says that total cinema admissions remained at the same ballpoint of 1.49 million in both years, with 7,000 more entries recorded in 2022.

The report further revealed that the little increase in total admissions counted in favour of Hollywood titles, leaving Nollywood films scrambling for an even smaller percentage of cinema-goers.

‘Cinema-worthy’ movies will become better

It will still be mostly comedy, but the storytelling will improve, drawing from the influence films like “Brotherhood” and “Anikulapo” may have had on the industry. 

Interestingly, 2022 had more noise for action and horror blockbusters than comedy. We did not even see the usual December films that cause a rush at cinemas across the country. 

But 2022 has shown that storytelling can be done well, and we cannot continue to lag in quality when quantity is not a problem. 

Cinema trends for 2023

In summary, this is saying that when you propose on a private jet, expect someone else to propose in a spaceship. 

Ticket prices will not drop

If you are hoping that ticket prices will drop in 2023, write it down and remember all the prices of goods and services that have risen in Nigeria – none ever goes back down. 

Diesel prices have stayed so expensive this year, and the government is doing literally nothing to keep it less or at bay. This is one reason ticket prices increased this year. 

Expect more next year, if you know what we mean. 

This is one reason 3D interest will not rise.

Final thoughts

We have only just begun to scratch the surface of what is possible in film technology. Audiences will continue to demand more out of their cinematic experiences, and filmmakers will respond with innovations that push the boundaries of what we consider “realistic” or “believable”. This is a very exciting time for both the film industry and audiences!


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