Hollywood strikes, Barbenheimer, Taylor Swift and Beyonce music tours defined 2023 entertainment

BySandy Kenyon WABC logo
Friday, December 29, 2023
Entertainment recap: Hollywood strikes, Barbenheimer and music tours
Sandy Kenyon has a look back on the most memorable entertainment moments from 2023.

NEW YORK -- 2023 was a year of historic events and major change in entertainment.

"I think we could sum up entertainment in 2023 with one word: disruption," said Marc Malkin, senior editor for Variety.

In May, the writers union went on strike against Hollywood studios, and in July, the actors union went on strike as well.

"Those strikes literally brought Hollywood to a screeching halt, nothing was going on while the writers and the actors were on strike," Malkin said.

It was the first time the two unions had been on strike together in 63 years. The writers reached an agreement with the studios in September, and the actors strike ended with a new deal in November.

Some movies' success came to define the year, including "Everything Everywhere All At Once" being a big winner at the Oscars. The movie took home the Best Picture, Best Actress, and both Supporting Actor awards.

Two very different movies, Barbie and Oppenheimer, released on the same day in July, dominated the summer box office.

"When I think 2023 in film, I think 'Barbenheimer,' there's nothing else really. It is all about 'Barbie' and 'Oppenheimer.' People were going to see 'Barbie' and 'Oppenheimer' on the same day," Malkin said.

When it comes to music in 2023, one name stands alone: Taylor Swift.

She had the highest grossing concert tour of the year, and the movie from that tour became the biggest concert film of all time.

Swift was named Time Magazine's Person of the Year, and practically broke the internet with her relationship with Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce.

Beyonce's Renaissance tour grossed more than half a billion dollars this year. Like Swift, she took her concert movie directly to the theaters.

"Beyonce could have had any studio distributing, you know, her concert film about her Renaissance tour, but Beyoncé said, 'you know what, I don't need a studio either, I'm going to go straight to the theaters,'" Malkin said.

On TV, "Succession" earned the most Emmy award nominations this year with 27. "The Last of Us" had 24 nominations, "The White Lotus" has 23, and "Ted Lasso" earned 21.

The Emmy Awards show was delayed this year due to the Hollywood strikes. The show will air in January.