Steven Spielberg explains why cinema will never die: “Audiences will go back”
Steven Spielberg, the legendary and critically acclaimed director, has opened up his about the future of the film industry by writing an essay to explain why believes that the art of cinema will never die.
Considered to be one of the leaders of the New Hollywood era, American filmmaker Steven Spielberg is one of the biggest names in the film industry and his projects have often defined the sensibilities of popular culture. Having risen to fame after his critical and commercial success of his 1975 film Jaws, an effort which was called the first ‘summer blockbuster’, His filmography has continued to grow impressively versatile and contains sci-fi epics like E.T. and Jurassic Park as well as serious works like Schindler’s List.
Spielberg was involved in making short films since he was a child. In 1958, he became a Boy Scout and fulfilled a requirement for the photography merit badge by shooting a nine-minute, 8mm film called The Last Gunfight. He later recalled, “My dad’s still-camera was broken, so I asked the scoutmaster if I could tell a story with my father’s movie camera. He said yes, and I got an idea to do a Western. I made it and got my merit badge. That was how it all started.” After half a century devoted to filmmaking, Steven Spielberg is the highest-grossing film director in history.
With a weight of experience behind him, Spielberg has written a feature for Empire, detailing why he believes that the world of cinema will bounce back after the devastating effects of the current coronavirus pandemic. “In the current health crisis, where movie theatres are shuttered or attendance is drastically limited because of the global pandemic, I still have hope bordering on certainty that when it’s safe, audiences will go back to the movies,” Spielberg said.
“In a movie theatre, you watch movies with the significant others in your life, but also in the company of strangers. That’s the magic we experience when we go out to see a movie or a play or a concert or a comedy act.”
He continued: “We don’t know who all these people are sitting around us, but when the experience makes us laugh or cry or cheer or contemplate, and then when the lights come up and we leave our seats, the people with whom we head out into the real world don’t feel like complete strangers anymore.
S“We’ve become a community, alike in heart and spirit, or at any rate alike in having shared for a couple of hours a powerful experience,” he added. “That brief interval in a theatre doesn’t erase the many things that divide us: race or class or belief or gender or politics. But our country and our world feel less divided, less fractured, after a congregation of strangers have laughed, cried, jumped out their seats together, all at the same time.
“Art asks us to be aware of the particular and the universal, both at once. And that’s why, of all the things that have the potential to unite us, none is more powerful than the communal experience of the arts.”