ELLY GRIMM • Leader & Times
2019 so far has been a great year for movies with the releases of such blockbusters as “Avengers: Endgame” and “Toy Story 4.” With another spring and summer blockbuster season in the books, the movie industry is preparing for its fall and winter releases.
“It went very well, it was a good spring/summer movie season for us. I know the industry overall is saying it's down from last year but for us, it was still a very good year,” Southgate Cinema 6 Owner Brian Mitchell said. “'Avengers: Endgame' broke a ton of box office records and some of the other big movies we had included 'John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum,' 'Aladdin,' the Elton John biopic 'Rocketman,' 'Toy Story 4,' 'Annabelle' did really well and so did 'Spider-Man: Far From Home,' and 'The Lion King' – something that was really noticed this year was the dominance of Disney at the theaters. Then there were some other movies out that took people by surprise like 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood' and 'Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw' and 'Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark,' all of those did really well for us. And then closing out the summer were 'Good Boys' and 'Angel Has Fallen.'”
Overall, Mitchell said, he and staff were very pleased with how the spring and summer movie releases ended up.
“There's been a lot of talk about the first few months of 2019 not being as big as 2018, and of course not because 2018 had really big movies like 'Black Panther' and 'Avengers: Infinity War,' which we knew would set the bar for the rest of the year, so we knew this year probably wouldn't quite be on that same level, and there were a lot of other big movies we put out,” Mitchell said. “So even if this year does finish behind 2018, it's still going to be a really big year on record for us, so that doesn't bother us. We don't really focus on year-to-year because there are so many changes that happen and things like that. Overall we're very pleased with how this year's going so far and we know there will be a lot of other big movies. And like I mentioned earlier, there's been a lot of talk about the dominance of Disney, but they're not going to be releasing movies on this year's scale every year. It's been a good year so far and we're very pleased.
And even though the month of September has barely started, Mitchell said he already has some predictions of how this fall and winter season will go.
“We're anticipating some big things even though September just started, and one of the bigger performers will, no doubt in my mind, be 'It: Chapter 2,' which will be coming out Friday. Then through September there will be some other great movies coming out like 'Hustlers' with Jennifer Lopez and 'Rambo: Last Blood.' Then October should be a great month too since we seeing 'Joker' come out and there's already buzz about Joaquin Phoenix being a shoe-in for the Best Actor Oscar. There's also going to be the new 'The Addams Family' movie and 'Maleficent: Mistress of Evil.' Then there will also be some awesome movies for everyone during the holiday seasons including 'Ford vs. Ferrari' and 'Frozen 2' and 'Nights Out.' Then I think the biggest ones to close out the year will be the next 'Jumanji' movie and the final 'Star Wars' movie, those should both be great. And along with all of those big movies there will also be several more mid-level movies that should interest people, it's great how the industry is mixing it up.”
Upon seeing what releases would occur this coming fall and winter movie season, Mitchell said he and staff were very excited.
“We were extremely excited when we saw what all would be hitting the screens. It used to be September and October weren't very strong movie months, but then the studios realized if there's good product out there, people will go and see it and they want to go to the movies all year round. That's part of the reason a movie like 'It: Chapter 2' will be released this month along with 'Ad Astra.' There's good product every month, and that's what makes us so excited every year because the movie industry has been changing it up and putting out good movies all throughout the year. The main thing is we're making sure to have concessions stocked up for everyone. And of course if you're planning on seeing 'It: Chapter 2' there will be some red balloons floating around town and there will probably be people dressed in costume with that. And of course there will be special products and concession items to go along with certain movies, so that's always a lot of fun to see all of those things.”
Mitchell added he and staff are looking forward to seeing how the fall and winter movie season ends up.
“There's a great lineup and it's great how there's a variety of genres of movies being released. Where our theaters do well is because there are a lot of faithful moviegoers who want to see a lot of the movies we play. So by giving a good variety, that's good for us because it makes our customers happy knowing there's that variety,” Mitchell said. “The one thing that will be interesting to see is when you have the juggernaut movies like with the 'Star Wars' series or the Marvel movies, those companies are scheduling their releases and making them so big that they're almost sucking the life out of the other releases happening at that time. So it'll be interesting to see if they juggle their release schedule a little bit. Not every movie released in August was a big blockbuster, but there were a lot of good movies people came to see that made a lot of money in their own right. We're excited and we look forward to seeing everyone at the movies.”