In the past, the film industry was perhaps the only industry (besides politics) in which abject failure has been met with consumer empathy and largesse. Ever since the days of the Great Depression, the American public has wanted Hollywood to succeed; to continue to entertain us with tales of adventure and drama. For if Hollywood survived, so did people's hopes for American culture.
There was an era when Hollywood celebrities and film creators were treated as a kind of modern royalty, a representation of the heights to which the average person could strive and “make it big.” The glitz and the glamour were viewed as the culmination of the American dream. But as with all fantasies, the story must end and reality must return. Was the movie business always a farce? Yes. However, it was a farce that the public held up even in the worst of times as something of value; something more than frivolity.
In the spans of around 7 years Hollywood has lost every ounce of social capital they had gained in the past century. That takes an epic level of ignorance and arrogance. It takes criminal levels of malicious intent and an unprecedented display of stupidity. The populace was willing to put up with almost any level of degeneracy from Tinsel Town as long as they could make compelling movies, and yet, they couldn't even do that.
Today, the consequences of their hubris are punching them right in the nether regions as the business collapses in on itself. And this time, no one seems to care. In fact, many people are cheering their inevitable demise.
In the past 4 years alone theaters across the country have seen a 50% plunge in box office attendance. Meaning, the industry somehow lost half its consumer base from 2019 to 2023. The media attempted to play down the crash as a symptom of the covid pandemic, but the fact is that the decline started well before the lockdowns, the closures in red states ended quickly, and some movies (such as Spider-Man: No Way Home and Top Gun: Maverick) had explosive success while most other films lost hundreds of millions of dollars in the midst of the covid hype.
It should be noted that a large percentage of celebrities and Hollywood corporate interests supported and promoted the covid lockdowns. They also joined the online lynch mobs seeking to shame and destroy anyone who defied the mandates. Now they're pretending like none of that ever happened, but the public has not forgotten.
In the past few months Hollywood has been dealing with the WGA and SAG worker strikes and there's no doubt they will attempt to blame the labor conflict for the continuing decay of profits just as they blamed covid. Already, multiple major studio productions have been pushed back two years or canceled altogether, and most premier release dates have been moved to 2024 – 2025. A number of television productions have been shut down and late night talk shows are on the verge of extinction. But you don't hear the public complain much, at least not as much as during the last major strikes in 2008.
No one cares about the writers, no one cares about the actors, and certainly no one cares about the studios for good reason. Though writers and actors might garner more sympathy than producers and CEOs due to concerns over AI, the threat of AI formulated screenplays is greatly overblown and AI generated proxies of famous actors are not going to bring back audiences in sufficient numbers to save the film industry anyway.
The strikes are seen as the last gasp of a dying institution, an institution that deserves to be cremated and replaced by a decentralized network of true creatives making content with substance and intelligence. The real reason for the death of Hollywood is simple, and it's a truth that the media will never admit to: Get woke, go broke. As a reminder, let's take a look at the plethora of woke failures Hollywood produced in 2022 alone...
Woke propaganda and DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion) ideology are the root cause of the implosion of showbiz. There is an inherent hostility within woke culture towards American heritage, towards constitutional freedoms, towards free markets and towards legitimate imagination and creativity. This hostility and deconstruction is not lost on the average consumer, they know when they are being attacked and they don't like it.
Beyond the industry's attempts to "count coup" against the conservative and moderate population, there is the basic matter of content quality. If the top priority of a creative endeavor is to implant extremist political messaging rather than tell a good story, it will be virtually impossible to tell a good story and the industry will attract the worst kinds of zealots.
The survival of Hollywood now relies on their ability to accept failure and recognize their mistakes, which will never happen.
It's not surprising that media simpletons are currently clinging to a movie like Barbie as a sample of woke success; they're desperate for a counter-argument to the Get Woke, Go Broke mantra. That said, exceptions to the rule do not change the rule. For every Barbie, there are a dozen Little Mermaid or Woman King bombs. And, Barbie was never marketed as a woke film (except in Australia). In fact, it was marketed as a normal romantic comedy romp in the US, something which female audiences have been clamoring for (how many decent romantic comedies has Hollywood released in the past 5 years? Why have there been so few? Is it because the far-left hates love stories about straight people?).
They had to hide the feminist cancer in order to get butts in the theater. Hardly a shining example of woke success. Barbie/Oppenheimer were likely the last hurrah for Hollywood as the strikes continue unabated and productions are pushed further into oblivion. All the parties involved in these strikes are responsible for their dwindling piece of the entertainment pie. The writers are garbage, the actors are garbage, the production companies are garbage. It would appear that consumers have decided it's time to put the garbage where it belongs – In the dustbin.