Craving For A Novel Experience
IMAX (NYSE:IMAX) brought $176.2 million at the box office this July, 2023, the company’s record-breaking July in terms of revenue.
Was IMAX’s box office performance always this exceptional? The arrival of the pandemic brought IMAX a 65% drop, with its revenue of $137M in 2020 from $395.66M in 2019 due to the outbreak’s impact on theaters.
This ignited a clear market demand from lockdowns, which gave a rise to streaming online, more than ever before, considering streaming surpassed 1 billion subscribers worldwide. Yet, has the reopening of the world now, slowly given a more appreciated interest to a niche of theater with an – “almost 180-degree viewing angle?”
Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer was credited for IMAX’s highest July ever. Director Kosinski for Top Gun: Maverick, which was the highest-grossing domestic release in 2022, said, “We have almost an hour of the film in full IMAX format.” Additionally, The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, which was the biggest global opening for 2023 at the time of release, was also shot in IMAX cameras.
For a movie watcher, IMAX (NYSE:IMAX) gives up to a 40% larger than standard movie screen view, that can gratify almost all of a viewer’s forward and peripheral vision, a “near-180 degree viewing angle.” In parallel, directors enjoy it for the storytelling enhancements and immersive qualities it offers to create the unique visual and cinematic experience it offers.
Also noteworthy, is the fact that IMAX isn’t the traditional theater, in fact, it actually lends its long-term technology to theaters and collects fees from service and maintenance agreements when it converts movies to its format. This means its business-model functions beyond typical constraints, and further only half of its revenue is derived from box office.
Despite the projected digital future – where all entertainment media is downloadable – IMAX could still be what the Musée du Louvre is for Mona Lisa: a unique place for people to go in person like the good old days, for standout content only available at IMAX (NYSE:IMAX).