By Scott Bowles
More than two-thirds of Americans went to the movies last year, and nearly half caught at least one 3D movie, the Motion Picture Association of America says.
In its annual report released Thursday afternoon, the MPAA says that moviegoing worldwide is on the uptick: sales are up 6% in North America and worldwide.
The MPAA credited much of the upswing to theater construction worldwide, which has helped foreign markets account for more than two-thirds of most movies' overall box office haul, the report says.
Among the MPAA findings:
- U.S. and Canadian box office hit a record $10.8 billion in 2012, up 6% over the previous year. Attendance also surged 6%
- About 68% of the North American population, or 225 million people, went to the movies at least once in 2012.
- Roughly 48% of moviegoers saw at least one film in 3-D last year, about the same percentage as in 2011.
- Global box office hit a record $34.7 billion, up 6% over the previous year.
Among other nations, China is seeing the fastest growth at the multiplex. According to the report, Chinese box office grew by 36% last year to $2.7 billion, putting it ahead of Japan and Latin America.
While analysts expected the surge, one nugget surprised observers: Illinois is the most avid film state in the country.
According to the MPAA, about 74% of Illinois residents saw a movie last year, followed by California (73%), Texas (72%) and Indiana (71%).