I'm looking for a hypernym to replace "movies and plays" in "Some movies and plays ...". I think that there's a word that describes both but I just can't remember it.

  • Drama, Thespians, players.
    – Ricky
    Commented May 12, 2017 at 2:54
  • 3
    Perhaps "some shows" . "Shows" was traditionally used for both and, while it might be a little like calling a "soft drink" a "soda" I don't think it's shockingly dated. "broadway show" (still common), "motion picture show" (not so common)
    – Tom22
    Commented May 12, 2017 at 3:05
  • Theatrical performance.
    – Xanne
    Commented May 13, 2017 at 6:56
  • Some entertainment perhaps? Unfortunately, there is much that makes movies and plays very different; it might be too much for them to share a word. Commented May 16, 2017 at 22:15
  • Might you be thinking of the word productions?
    – dekaliber
    Commented May 18, 2017 at 6:11

3 Answers 3


A Show or a Performance I believe would fit.

  • We're looking for long answers that provide some explanation and context. Please explain why your answer is right, ideally with citations. Answers that don't include explanations may be removed.
    – NVZ
    Commented May 20, 2017 at 6:06
  • Unfortunately, I am my own resource having had a conversation with a professor on the exact topic. EMBARRASSING. I realize I should have looked up and cited something a bit more concrete. But, I tried.. 😶 Should I delete? I respect your site very much. I apologise. Commented May 25, 2017 at 22:31
  • at least mention that in the answer
    – NVZ
    Commented May 26, 2017 at 9:45

I suggest aiming a bit more narrowly than Jezebelisgone's suggestion of show or performance and using the two-word term scripted performance, where scripted refers to the following sense of script (as defined in Merriam-Webster's Eleventh Collegiate Dictionary [2003]):

the written text of a stage play, screenplay, or broadcast; specif : one used in production or performance

As the terms stage play and screenplay suggest, films and plays have in common that the performers generally work from a carefully developed script of speeches that the actors memorize and recite in character. Many types of shows and performances (dance recitals, juggling acts, etc.) do not do this. Nevertheless, scripted performance does not apply exclusively to films and stage plays. TV shows, radio broadcasts, comedy routines, and even political speeches (for example) could be categorized as scripted performances as well.


As suggested in a comment: entertainment, according to Cambridge Dictionary:

shows, films, television, or other performances or activities that entertain people, or a performance of this type

Attribution: (Definition of “entertainment” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

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