Moviegoing Will Rebound, CineMedia CEO Lesinski Says: ‘Not If, But When’

Labor News, Industry News

Reprinted from Deadline Hollywood by Dade Hayes on December 1, 2020.

Judging by the $14 million box office tally for The Croods: A New Age over the five-day Thanksgiving weekend span, the theatrical movie business will rebound, in the view of National CineMedia CEO Tom Lesinski.

Speaking Tuesday at the Bank of America Securities Leveraged Finance Virtual Conference, the exec took note of the sequel’s ability to outdo Warner Bros’ Tenet despite having only 45% of U.S. theaters available. “It’s a good indication of not if this industry’s going to recover but when,” he said. “Consumers are going to come back.”

He didn’t make predictions about exact gross numbers or the length of the recovery. Casting a glance in the rear-view mirror, he said the steady attendance level between 2009 and 2019 is “remarkable” given the welter of competition faced by the theatrical movie business. Like many industry partisans, he expects significant “pent-up demand” to be expressed in the months and years to come. …

Deadline Hollywood 12/1

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Jeff Burman served on the Guild’s Board of Directors from 1992 to 2019. He is now retired. He can be reached at