Why pay $10 to see a movie when you can save up to 50% by purchasing several tickets at once? Several clubs and organizations offer significant discounts to consumers willing to buy a book of tickets:
Not content with providing just fee-ridden television and internet service, Comcast is looking to charge up to $49.95 to stream movies to your home the day they premier in theaters. The two largest movie theater operators, Regal Entertainment and National Amusements, have banded together to express their displeasure, with Regal’s CEO saying: “We’re not interested in playing anything that makes its debut in the home and at the theater at the same time.” Comcast doesn’t care.
Stephen Burke, Comcast’s cable president and chief operating officer, told an audience at an industry conference this week that several studios were “very interested” in the idea of allowing cable providers to charge $29.95 to $49.95 to watch an opening-day movie at home. He said it would increase studio revenues rather than cannibalize them, if handled properly.
The studios, too busy drooling over the prospects of additional profit, declined to comment. Would you forego the deliciously buttery movie theater experience for the comfort of your home? Tell us in the comments. — CAREY GREENBERG-BERGER
- 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. Campbell said that ordinarily customers won’t say anything such problems while the film is running. “They just will complain on their way out or, in the worst case scenario, they don’t come back.” 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.
There’s not a ton of new information in Ars Technica’s Peek into movie theater economics, but Ken Fisher does manage to pull out a few bits that were new to us.