Now, back to the real world. Once upon a time, there were places called movie theaters. . .
In years to come many more people may go to the movies at home instead of downtown. What's upstaging the movie house? Pay TV, which draws sharp increases in subscribers and is a less costly outlet for film distributors. So says a University of Illinois study. Theaters will continue to exist, but they'll make more money from popcorn and candy than from increasingly expensive movies. Some theaters are responding to the change by specializing in categories ranging from Christian films to classics.
Almost as many movie screens exist as did 30 years ago. But seating capacity is down. So is attendance - about 25 percent of what it was in the mid-'40s.