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‘And…. cut!’ The TV viewers left in the dark now that Margaret and David won’t be At The Movies

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source October2013 – September 2014, sample = 50,587 Australians 14+

After 28 years, film critics Margaret Pomeranz and David Stratton are set to depart Australian TV screens with the final episode of At The Movies airing next Tuesday, December 9—and around 420,000 Australians (14+) give the show five stars, TV involvement data from Roy Morgan Research shows.

After 18 years rating the latest cinema releases on The Movie Show on SBS, Pomeranz and Stratton moved to the ABC with At The Movies in 2004. In the year to September 2014, over 1.1 million Australians 14+ (5.9%) gave the program four and a half stars, citing it as one they ‘especially choose to watch’. Almost 420,000 (2.2%) went even further, naming it as a show they ‘really love to watch’. 

There is, of course, an obvious connection between frequency of cinema attendance and being a big fan of a show about cinema. Around 3 in 4 people who really love At The Movies went to the cinema in an average three month period in the year to September 2014, compared with just 46% of the general population.

Around 1 in 5 Australians go to the cinema once in a three month period, and another 1 in 8 go twice, 1 in 10 go three or four times and 1 in 20 go five or more times. But At The Movies fans are more evenly distributed with just under 1 in 5 making one, two, three or four, or five or more cinema visits.  

Frequency of cinema visitation: Australian norm vs At The Movies fans

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source October2013 – September 2014, sample = 50,587 Australians 14+

In 2014, people who love At the Movies were 7.5x more likely to see The Dallas Buyers Club (Margaret and David gave it four stars each), 5 times more likely to see Tracks (four stars each) and over four times more likely to see 12 Years a Slave (four and a half stars each).

Overall, people who love At The Movies make around 2.5x as many cinema visits as the Australian average of just over one visit per three month period. It now remains to be seen if the end of the show will affect cinema attendance. Do regular cinema-goers love the show, or is it that those who love the show then go to the cinema often? 

Tim Martin, General Manager - Media, Roy Morgan Research, says:

“After 28 years on air, Margaret and David barely need surnames, and At The Movies is clearly a beloved and trustworthy source of advice for many Australian cinephiles.

“Their absence from our screens will no doubt leave a hole in the market. Cinema chains and film distributors will need to track which sources frequent cinema-goers are turning to for recommendations on which tickets to buy at the box office, from newspapers or movie magazines to online review blogs, social media, word-of-mouth among family and friends and review aggregators like Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic.

“Our trended research into Australians’ cinema-going habits can be combined with in-depth segmentation profiling to reveal who and where are the people most likely to see a particular film, and which media they prefer to use.”     

To learn more about how to identify, understand and reach Australians with different media consumption habits and attitudes, please contact:

Vaishali Nagaratnam
Office:   +61 (3) 9224 5309