Even though Taylor Swift (33) and Beyoncé (42) filled huge halls on their mega tours in 2023, only a fraction of their millions of fans were lucky enough to get tickets for the spectacular live shows. For everyone who couldn't be there, they made their concert events a first-hand experience in the form of lavishly produced films.
While she was still on tour, Taylor Swift, who has now been crowned “Person of the Year 2023”, brought the concert film “Taylor Swift: Eras Tour” to cinemas. The almost three-hour work presents recordings of their shows performed between August 3rd and 5th at the SoFi Stadium in Inglewood near Los Angeles. As is usual with the singer, she also broke another sales record with this concert film. After its theatrical release on October 13th in over 100 countries, it grossed around $92.8 million in its opening weekend in the USA alone - by far the best start of a concert film of all time.
Similar to the sale of their highly sought-after concert tickets, the high demand for tickets for the concert film also caused the ticketing apps to crash. Cinema giant AMC wryly stated in the Hollywood Reporter: "AMC recognizes that no ticketing system in history appears to have been able to meet the enormous demand from Taylor Swift fans when tickets go on sale for the first time to be brought to market."
On December 1st, Swift's colleague and biggest competitor Beyoncé followed her example and released her own concert film, which documents the shows on her six-month "Renaissance World Tour", offers a look behind the scenes of the show and also recounts the four-year preparations for the tour in a documentary manner .
"Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé" didn't become a mega-blockbuster like Swift's concert film, but according to the "Hollywood Reporter" it still grossed $21.8 million in its first three days in North America. However, outside the continent, total revenue in the same period was only $6.4 million. Beyoncé celebrated the release of the film with two premiere parties in Los Angeles and London. Her colleague Taylor Swift also attended the event in the UK, returning the favor for Beyoncé's visit to the premiere of her own concert film the previous October.
Above all, the huge success of "Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour" is likely to further strengthen the trend observed in recent years of turning concert experiences into cinema events. This was already fueled during the corona pandemic in 2020 and 2021. Since no live events could take place in front of an audience due to the protective measures, many acts such as Miley Cyrus (31), James Blunt (49), Coldplay and Nick Cave ( 66) simply performed in front of cameras instead of people and then streamed the concerts to their fans.
In 2023, in addition to Taylor Swift and Beyoncé, other superstars from the music scene also brought their concerts to the big screen. For example, Billie Eilish (22) with her concert film “Live At The O2 (Extended Cut)”, which was shown once in over 2,000 cinemas on January 27th. The metal band Metallica also let their fans worldwide take part in their live shows with the cinema event “Metallica: M72 World Tour Live From Arlington, TX” on August 19th and 21st. In addition, the legendary concert film "Stop Making Sense" by the avant-garde band Talking Heads from 1983 returned to cinemas with a 4K remaster on the occasion of its 40th anniversary.