CinemaCon: African-American Moviegoers Increase For First Time Since 2009

Source: Pamela McClintock / The Hollywood Reporter

LAS VEGAS — The number of African-Americans going to the movies increased significantly in 2013, representing the first spike since 2009, according to the MPAA’s report on moviegoing.

MPAA chairman and CEO Chris Dodd and National Association of Theatre Owners chairman/president John Fithian attributed the jump to a diverse slate of films, including a proliferation of titles featuring African-American themes and stars, including Lee Daniels’ The Butler, Oscar-winner 12 Years a Slave, and Kevin Hart comedies The Best Man Holiday and Black Nativity.

More than 170 million African-Americans took a trip to the cinema in 2013, a 13 percent gain compared to roughly 150 million in 2012.

Minorities overall made up a larger percentage of ticket buyers last year. Hispanics continue to make more trips to the theater than any other ethnic group, representing 25 percent of ticket buyers, although they only make up 17 percent of the population. African-Americans, who represent 12 percent of the population, purchased 13 percent of all tickets. Asian and other minorities, who make up 8 percent of the population, bought 8 percent of all tickets sold.

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