3D Movies Released in 2015 (updated)

2015 was a very big year for 3D movies with 63 features released. This includes both major releases and some releases only released in specific markets. It appears that 2016 has 37 3D features planned for release at this time. I found an excellent list listed at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_3D_films. The following chart shows a breakdown of the number of 3D releases shown by Wikipedia:

3D Releases per Year

In March of this year MPAA will release its Theatrical Market Statistics for 2015. I am looking forward to analyzing these numbers once they come out. I have always found interesting that the number of movie screens capable for 3D does not come close to matching the percentage of receipts that come from 3D versions of the movies released. In 2012, approximately 34% of movie screens in the US and Canada were 3D capable.  In 2013 this rose to approximately 37%, and in 2014, these numbers did not rise significantly and still remained around 37%.  Box office receipts for 3D movies only comprise less than 13% of the total box office receipts for 2014. There appears to be a definite room for growth based on the 3D capable infrastructure already in place. As I have looked at the numbers over the years, many of the 3D movies are viewed primarily in 2D and only a few movies are viewed primarily in 3D. With such a large release of 3D movies, I am hopeful that these numbers have improved or at least the percentage of 3D movies that are viewed in 3D has gone up.

One positive point that I am seeing relates to the negative press on 3D movies has significantly reduced since 2011. Either the movies are getting better and the industry is learning to create better 3D or the press is just gotten bored with the subject.

Once I have the MPAA statistics in hand, I will further analyze the numbers to ascertain what these statistics tell us about the 3D theatrical market.


4 thoughts on “3D Movies Released in 2015 (updated)

  1. Ed:

    I am curious about two statements in your blog. “Box office receipts for 3D movies only comprise less than 13% of the total box office receipts for 2014.” And, “As I have looked at the numbers over the years, many of the 3D movies are viewed primarily in 2D and only a few movies are viewed primarily in 3D.” Does the “13%” revenue combine showings of both 2D and 3D of the same title? In other words, is the 3D revenue figure being artificially inflated because it also includes the 2D receipts?


    1. In regards to your first question: The 13% revenue only takes into account 3D movies overall. The interesting point comes to play when you compare this to the percentage of screens which are 3D capable. Looking purely at these numbers, there appears to be some room for significant growth. In other words, either more people are packing into the 2D theaters or 2D is being shown on 3D capable screens. I am not sure which is the case.

      In regards to your second question: 3D revenue figure is not being artificially inflated because they do not include the 2D receipts for that same feature. MPAA treats each separately. For example, Avatar in 3D shows up in the 3D numbers and Avatar in 2D shows up in the 2D numbers.

      When you look at each movie separately, some movies have a high percentage of people who view it in 3D and a lower percentage in 2D. For example Avatar had about 71% of its revenue from the 3D version. There are many movies in 3D with a lower percentage. I would love to find the numbers for each movie released and compare the 3D vs 2D on a movie to movie basis. My guess would be that the more popular movies may have the higher percentages in 3D.

      Keep in mind when looking at the MPAA statistics, the most complete numbers are for the US and Canada. It would be interesting to do the same comparison for the rest of the world on a country by country basis.


  2. Would be interesting to know what percentage of overall releases 3D represents. I have also noticed that unlike movies like say Avatar the studios do not promote the 3D experience, so when a viewer is either cost or time conscious they go to the more available version. It almost seems like the studios think there is a finite 3D audience and promoting the 3D experience of a movie will not significantly increase revenue. Will be interesting if 2016 brings another breakthrough 3D experience such as Avatar, Life of Pi, Hugo, etc.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yes it would be interesting what percentage of overall releases 3D represents. I am hoping to work those numbers soon. There are some interesting possibilities which either have come out or planned for 2016.
    Most people do not understand what 3D brings to the viewing experience. It really does not take a block buster for 3D to enhance the viewing experience. However, in many cases, people may not be willing to shell out the extra dollars to view 3D unless it is a “breakthrough 3D experience.” Even then even Avatar, Life of Pi, or Hugo had even close to 100% viewing in 3D as apposed to those viewing in 2D. I believe Avatar was around 71%. I am not sure of the percentages for the other movies that you mentioned. I personally prefer watching in 3D, especially those that are native 3D. I saw Hugo in first 2D and then in 3D. The difference was astounding.


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