Trends of the mid-to late 1990s
The 1990s saw an increase in cinema attendance- mostly at multi-screen cineplex complexes throughout the country.
Indoor multiplexes multiplied from almost 23,000 in 1990 to 35,600 in the year 2000; the number of drive-ins continued to decline (from 910 in 1990 to 667 in 2000).
An imbalanced emphasis was given the opening weekend. More movies with expensive, high-budget films with expensive special effects (including shoot 'em-ups, stereotypical chase scenes, and graphic orchestrated violence) were made; the belief was that this equated with quality. (Not.)
In the mid-1990s, mega-stars made excessive demands. Ironically, a highly-paid star in a big-budget film didn't guarantee a film's success.
True character development, interesting characters, credible plots, and intelligent story-telling often suffered. .
The average ticket price for a film varied from about $4.25 at the start of the decade to around $5 by the close of the decade
The signs of the digital age portended revolutionary change.
The average film budget was almost $53 million by 1998, many films cost over $100 million to produce, and some of the most expensive blockbusters were even more..
Late 1990s sees technological changes
As we enter the 1990s the VCR was still a popular. Rentals and purchase of videotapes were big business - much larger than sales of movie theater tickets.
Beginning in 1994, rather than attending special film screenings, members of the Academy of Motion Pictures viewed Oscar-nominated films on videotape,.
By 1997, the first DVDs had emerged in stores. Sales of DVD players and DVDs would surpass the sale of VCRs and videotapes.
Pioneering film-makers were experimenting with making digital-video (DV) films, pushing digital imagery and special effects, or projecting films digitally.
A number of films also used special-effects CGI in more subtle, innovative ways:
In the mid -1990s there was a rise in the number of independent movies being produced.
The IFP Independent Spirit Awards - founded in 1984 - honored visionary, innovative film-makers, and unsung actors and actresses in independent film.
The Independent Film Channel was launched by the Bravo cable network in 1994 as an outlet for independent films.
In 1995, the Sundance Channel was created by the Showtime cable TV network (in partnership with Robert Redford).
In 1996 four of the five Best Picture Oscar nominated films (all but Jerry Maguire (1996)) were from independent studios.
Robert Redford’s Sundance Institute (established in 1980) took over the Utah/US Film Festival. In 1991, it was renamed the Sundance Film Festival.
By the end of the decade, most studios had formed independent film divisions. But by the end of the decade, independent film-making had become more mainstream and institutionalized - sharing some of the same concerns and corporate worries that traditional Hollywood studios had always confronted.
By the mid 1990s 40% of the films produced went directly to video (laserdisc or DVD) or cable with no cinematic theatrical release at all.
1990s saw the beginnings of groundbreaking internet film-marketing.
Independently-distributed film movement was also proving that it could compete (both commercially and critically) with Hollywood's costly output.
Michigan Film Industry in the 1990s
In the 1990s Michigan saw an uptick in the number of films which were being filmed in Michigan. The problem with many of the movies listed by the Michigan film office is they were never filmed in Michigan. Why would they claim them then? In some instances, the only connection with Michigan may be found in the name (as Detroit Rock City, which was filmed entirely according to sources in Ontario, Canada) or the character (as in the movie Hoffa (1992), which according to Wikipedia "Although it (the movie) chronicles Hoffa's early years in Michigan to his leadership in New York City and Washington, D.C. and his death in a Detroit suburb, almost all of the film was shot in and around Pittsburgh with the city's landmarks ) or (as Cobb (1997), who although a Detroit Tiger (Ty Cobb), is a film which never saw filming in Michigan.) Many of the films made in Michigan may leave you asking, "Why?" But that's the history of Michigan's film industry--a history riddled with questionable quality movies. Biker Zombies in Detroit? Really?