video game boyBased on a survey with an admittedly small sample size (2000 movie-going males between 13 and 24), young men are attending movies in significantly smaller numbers than they did only two years ago. According to the survey, men in that crucial demographic have this year seen 24% fewer movies than they did 2003, and they blame both competition and cost as the primary reasons they've stayed away. Those who participated in the poll reported that they preferred surfing the net and playing video games to attending movies, while somewhat downplaying high-profile concerns like movie quality and the allure of simply waiting for DVDs to come out. Additionally, a massive percentage (68%) of respondents blamed high ticket prices for their lack of interest in new releases.

All of which leaves Hollywood in a bit of a quandary. First of all, ticket prices have not skyrocketed over the past few years - instead, it seems as if people have just realized there are other things they can do with their money. Additionally, as the New York Times article linked below rightly points out, Hollywood has largely (except around Oscar season) neglected adult audiences in favor of the crucial young male demographic - so what happens now when they're losing those viewers, but the pipeline is full of more Deuce Bigalowsand American Pies? Jeez. I mean, these poor studios just can't catch a break.