Study: TV, trailers keep teens tuned to movies


NEW YORK -- A majority of teens see movies within the first two weeks after their release, and despite the surging popularity of the Internet among 13- to 17-year-olds, most find out about the latest films from TV ads and in-theater trailers, according to a new study from consumer research firm OTX and teen social networking site eCrush.

The "Teen Topix" study, which surveyed 750 teens nationwide, also found that most in the age group are viewing movies they missed in theaters by renting or buying DVDs, with only 1%-5% choosing to see them via downloads, depending on the title.

"This type of information adds another dimension to the research movie studios need about today's teens," said Bruce Friend, president of media and entertainment insights at OTX. "As studios begin to think of their films as brands and brand franchises, information about the teen audience is crucial to targeting, establishing launch plans and making determinations of which films may become the next big franchise."

According to the study, 27% of teens usually go to a film on opening weekend and an additional 44% go within the first two weeks. About 61% of teens find out about the latest movies from TV ads and 46% from in-theater trailers. Another 15% discover new films from entertainment Web sites, 15% from social networking sites, 13% from video-sharing sites and 8% from movie-ticket sites.

The survey asked teens to list all the ways they find out about new films, which explains why the percentages add up to more than 100%. The "buzz factor" also is key to influencing moviegoing decisions for teens, with 70% saying that people talking about a movie makes them want to see it in the theater.

The teens in the survey chose Zac Efron as the hottest male movie star of the summer, followed by Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Shia LaBeouf and Daniel Radcliffe. The hottest female movie star of the summer was Jessica Alba, followed by Jessica Biel, Keira Knightley, Megan Fox and Emma Watson.

Among the fall/winter movies teens most want to see are "Saw IV," "National Treasure: Book of Secrets," "Mama's Boy," "Fred Claus," "I Am Legend," "Alvin and the Chipmunks" and "Enchanted."

The top five movies teens want to see sequels for are "Pirates of the Caribbean," "Harry Potter," "Transformers," "Spider-Man" and "Shrek."