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November 30, 2006

Theaters Testing Push-Button Device To Call Ushers For Rowdies

It's about time:

Regal Theaters, the nation's largest theater chain, has begun testing devices in 25 of its locations that allow patrons to summon ushers if audience members use cell phones or become unruly. Regal Chief Executive Michael Campbell told the Reuters Media Summit in New York Wednesday that a second button will notify management of faulty projection, a third about uncomfortable room temperature, and a fourth about any other problem.

...

He said that he expects the device to be available nationwide next year and that it will be given to "mature" audience members, who will receive free popcorn for their efforts.

Projection problems are big, too. What do you do when a film is being shown out of focus, or if it is mis-aimed at the screen? You can either get up and try to find the manager and miss ten minutes of the movie (as I've done) or start yelling "Focus!," which other people don't like and which is unlikely to have any effect, as I doubt there's a person in the projection booth most of the time anyway.

Theaters really have to be aggressive about making going to the movies a more enjoyable experience. Especially for big, splashy, spectacular movies, most (I think) would prefer the big-screen experience... if not for the constant problems, the huge lines, the yappers right behind you, etc. With HD DVD now promising something approaching the big-screen experience, it might be just about over for the theaters anyway; but they might as well go down fighting.

Thanks again to PetiteDov.


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posted by Ace at 05:51 PM

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