Today in 1927, the first Movietone newsreel was shown at the Roxy Theater in New York, 22 days after the opening of the feature-length film that ushered in the era of the “talkies.” In The Jazz Singer, Al Jolson spoke the first line of dialogue in a full-length movie: “Wait a minute. Wait a minute. You ain’t heard nothin’ yet.”
Weekly movie attendance rose from 57 million in 1927 to 95 million in 1929. U.S. population in 1929: 121 million. By 2000, with the US population growing to 281 million, weekly movie attendance dropped to 27 million.