I got wondering about this and ended up posing a question to Google. 15 years ago, they almost dominated the theaters. At one time, I would have seriously said the romantic comedy was my favorite genre. I could watch the best ones over and over again (still do), fully knowing the ending (which was always the same ending, but no matter). But I've noticed they rarely show up at the box office now, and when they do, they don't even strike me as all that good, and I was wondering why.
Here is a long article, and I admit I skimmed and skipped much of it, but it does offer some insight as to what happened to romantic comedies
. It also corrects some of my own misconceptions about movie goer demographics, and verifies some of my suspicions, one being that the studios took a good thing, and tried to take it on a different track, perhaps realizing the formula, though successful, was formed from very narrow parameters. In addition, competition from Marvel and DC superhero bock busters don't account for the lack of current interest either. There is always interest in a good movie. But someone has to make the movies good enough to get people to the theater.
THE LIST OF SUSPECTS
Teenagers? Nope, they just don't buy that many movie tickets.
Men? According to the article, nope, although I didn't understand the reasoning on this one.
Bad scripts? Yeah, probably a real factor. But not the writers fault; Studios lost their focus.
Stars? Nope, the talent is still there. It just doesn't want to be associated with box office poison.
Superheroes? Kind of. But driven by an odd financial twist; Romantic comedy doesn't launch lucrative franchises.