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Alamo Drafthouse Had A Roller Coaster Of A Year For Foot Traffic In 2022

Movie theaters came back with a bang in mid-2021, as COVID vaccines rolled out and people felt more comfortable going to public places. Box office numbers began to climb, and the theater experience was back. Many moviegoers are still trekking to the theater in 2022, but numbers aren't quite where they were pre-pandemic (via Box Office Mojo).

We've been examining the numbers behind foot traffic in theaters within the last year, and cinemas are on a roller coaster ride in terms of their visitor numbers. Looper previously reported on Cinemark and AMC's numbers, with the latter absolutely dominating the industry. For example, after "Spider-Man: No Way Home" premiered in December 2021, AMC reached almost 180,000 visits while Cinemark had approximately 72,000.

We're now examining the numbers for the Alamo Drafthouse, a small chain of 36 locations that serve meals as a part of their experience. This particular chain has seen steep inclines and dramatic drops surrounding blockbuster premiere dates.

The Alamo Drafthouse thrives on big blockbuster premieres

The Alamo Drafthouse chain of cinemas has had quite the year in terms of visitors. Based on information gathered by Data Herald, the theater seems to pull in guests immediately after a big film drops and then sees a significant decline in foot traffic shortly after. The Alamo Drafthouse, which boasts 36 locations, had a decent first half of January with a little under 2,100 visits. Those numbers started to drop toward the end of the month, likely due to the interest in "Spider-Man: No Way Home" dying down, which premiered on December 17, 2021.

The spikes on the chart can be directly connected to the biggest premieres of the year so far, with the Alamo Drafthouse's most successful months being May and June. The May numbers shoot up at the beginning of the month thanks to the debuts of "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" and "Top Gun: Maverick" on the 6th and 12th, respectively. According to The Numbers, the May films are the most successful of the year so far, matching the foot traffic spike. Both sequels also put up consistent numbers weekly, especially "Top: Gun Maverick," which only had a 29% decrease in its gross profit from Week 1 to Week 2. For comparison, "Doctor Strange 2" had a 67% drop.

Other spikes in foot traffic on the chart are thanks to other big premieres of the year like "Uncharted" (February), "Sonic the Hedgehog 2" (April), "The Batman" (May), and "Thor: Love and Thunder" (July).