Optimists and pessimists about the filmed entertainment business will find plenty of evidence to support their cases today in PwC’s Global Entertainment And Media Outlook, its annual five-year forecast. Worldwide spending for theater tickets and home video will grow about 3.1% a year to nearly $100B in 2016 according to the professional services firm formerly known as PricewaterhouseCoopers. Box office revenues will rise 6.3% a year, but home videos will stagger along up 0.5% a year. DVDs and other physical media will continue to dominate the home video business, but the 20% decline in spending for them will virtually wipe out the gains from the doubling payments for digital downloads and streams. Most of the industry’s growth will come from overseas: Filmed entertainment spending in North America will rise less than 1% a year to $35.3B in 2016. As a result, the U.S. and Canada will account for just 35.5% of all revenues, down from 39.6% last year and 42.7% in 2007.
The story’s a lot cheerier in television. Ad sales in North America will rise an average of 6.6% a year to $103.3B in 2016. Broadcast and cable companies will benefit from the growth of the overall TV audience, new viewing platforms including mobile tablets and phones, and advertisers’ souring view of print media. PwC doesn’t seem to buy the theory that pay TV consumers are tapped out and unwilling to pay a lot more than they do now. The firm forecasts that spending in North America will grow 5.8% a year to $106.4B.
Overall, PwC expects worldwide spending for media and entertainment to rise 5.7% a year to $2.1T in 2016 with digital media accounting for 67% of the growth. In the U.S., about 31.5% of all industry spending will go to digital media in 2016, up from 21.7% last year. Here’s how different media are expected to fare in North America: Internet wired and mobile access ($93B in revenue in 2016, +9.5% a year over five years), Internet ads ($72.6B, +16%), Music ($21.5B, +5.4%), Video games ($18.6B, +4.3%), Consumer magazines ($22.5B, +1.7%), Newspapers ($34.1B, -1.4%), Radio ($24.8B, +4.2%), Out-of-home ads ($8.9B, +5%), and Consumer and educational books ($34.3B, +1.1%).