Dystopian Movies Have Doubled Since 2010

25 June, 2024

Image: Friends, NBC

Modern audiences are captivated by dystopian content, reflecting growing concerns about AI, digital surveillance, climate change and other issues. The genre’s resonance with contemporary audiences is evident in the enduring popularity of franchises like “The Planet of the Apes” and “Mad Max,” which has had a huge cultural impact despite the latest installment’s underperformance at the box office. Both franchises released new installments in 2024, and have maintained audience interest for almost five decades, underscoring the genre’s popularity. 


Over the last 14 years, the number of dystopian movies has increased significantly, outpacing the overall growth in movies released. Between 2010 and 2024, dystopian movies doubled in number, while the total number of movies grew by 82%, according to Parrot Analytics’ Content Panorama. This trend indicates a strong industry response to the growing audience interest in the end of the world. Make of that what you will. 

Most of the movies released within this genre since 2010 have attracted predominantly male audiences and appeal to both younger and older viewers, while franchise titles and remakes in the genre attract older audiences. These include 2021’s “The Matrix Resurrections” as well as the three most recent films from the “Resident Evil” and “The Purge” franchises, “Mad Max: Fury Road” and most of the “Planet of the Apes” universe. 


The most recent entry, “Kingdom Of The Planet Of The Apes,” differs from the last three titles. The film skews towards a younger audience, similar to more recent titles such as “Pacific Rim,” “Maze Runner” and certain Anime movies. The creation of new franchises and the revival of older ones highlight the genre’s vitality and longevity.

Besides the predominantly male audience, a growing number of dystopian movies cater to the female audience. Around 21% of dystopian movies released since 2010 had a female-skewed audience and most of these movies attracted primarily young audiences. The “Hunger Games” franchise stands out as the most popular in this category, inspiring the production of more movies aimed at young female audiences and generating new franchises like “The Divergent” series, which, however, did not achieve the same level of success.

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