“The sky may be falling, but in the end, it isn’t going to hit the ground. We will be left with a little breathing room. And the question will become: what will succeed in this much narrower space?
“I believe that a fair number of people — call them what’s left of the theatrical audience if you like — will always need to get out of the house: in part because they enjoy the benefits of a communal experience.
“Clearly, only the better films will succeed in the theaters of the future. Certainly the number of releases will drop — by half or more. Probably everyone other than the folks who work on tentpoles will be paid less. The words ‘theatrical necessity‘ will take on greater and greater meaning. Probably a lot of theaters will close. But I think the best theaters showing the best films will always have an audience. And the rest of the films will have their premiere in Walmart, or on your cell phone.
“Interestingly enough, in this Darwinian new future, there will absolutely be a premium for good films on tv, pay per view, on-demand, internet — or whatever that large pipe that goes to all of our houses will be called.
“Why do I know this? Because one of the big research companies conducted a study recently which gave viewers on-demand everything. No more schedules. No more appointment television. Just tune in anything — any movie, any TV show — at any time. And guess what? The best stuff won out. Hands down.”