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Hollywood Twist: Attendance—Not Ticket Prices—Fuels Growth

Movie-goers wait in line to buy tickets at a Harkins movie theater in Denver, Colorado.

Movie-goers wait in line to buy tickets at a Harkins movie theater in Denver, Colorado.

Photographer: Matthew Staver/Bloomberg

Hollywood’s reliance on escalating movie-ticket prices has helped bolster box-office sales for decades.

But last year told a different tale: Attendance, rather than price inflation, was the biggest force in helping set a box-office record of $11.9 billion in revenue.