The past few years have been turbulent for the economy in many ways, but they created existential crisis for movie theatres.
Even before the pandemic arrived in Canada, many online streaming services had been experimenting with whether they could bypass movie theatres altogether by releasing movies and directly onto their platforms.
Against that backdrop, in early 2020, COVID-19 arrived in Canada, and delivered a one-two punch: People stopped gathering in theatres, and stopped or at least cut back the pace at which they were making new movies. Meanwhile, streaming services thrived in these conditions.
But like zombies, movie theatres have a history of coming back from the dead — for more information, revisit the history of VHS cassettes — and now ticket sales at many movie theatres have started picking up again, though progress remains uneven.