Summer is usually the time when Hollywood releases most of its films for children, in hopes of luring flocks of kids to the theater. But not this summer.
Last year, theaters were deluged with no fewer than seven family releases, including Monsters University, Despicable Me 2, Epic, and Turbo. But this year, theater owners are concerned because only two movies aimed specifically at younger children – How to Train Your Dragon 2 and Disney’s Planes: Fire and Rescue – will be released this summer.
This is a cause for concern among parents as well. Children’s movies are often some of the best-performing films Hollywood puts out…in spite of which, it is making fewer of them. And despite the recent glut of comic-book-based glut movies, fewer and fewer of them are appropriate for younger children due to more frequent and intense violence (as witness last summer’s Man of Steel, or this year’s Captain America: the Winter Soldier). Maybe someday, Hollywood will realize that some of its most popular (and most beloved) films – like The Wizard of Oz – were made for children.