Movie Theater Ads “More than $50k per screen anually.”

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.

Did you know, for instance, that the pre-movie advertisements—now running up to fifteen minutes before showtime—come at the expense of movie trailers? The studios don’t actually pay to get their advertisements for future films on screen, meaning they essentially have to beg to get their full run of movie previews instead of another ad for your local community college.

Considering how much we despise the movie industry, though, we’re not sure if we should be pitying anyone, besides those who actually paid to watch a movie.


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  1. HINKShopper says:

    On a similar note, has anyone notice a steep uptick in the number of trailers movie-watchers are required to endure when viewing a DVD? And that you can’t skip them to view the main menu?

    Dreamworks is guilty of this one, and others are catching on fast.

    Are these previews credited toward the ‘Bonus Footage’ allotment? Come to think of it why don’t you include a couple of screaming kids or complimentary ringing cell phones in the package along with that extra footage?

    I’m sure there’s a couple of unused nickels in Hollywood’s accounts that you can use to buy a collective clue. I just purchased the DVD — if you’re goal is to drive future sales, why are you subjecting us to this?

  2. RandomHookup says:

    DVD mandatory trailers are a big irritant… I watch hundreds of movies a year and have seen some of these ads again and again… I usually warm up the DVD player first and then crank up the TV later so I miss the FBI warning and the forced trailers.

  3. Jillsy says:

    And the worst is, people who use BitTorrent don’t thave to put up with any of it. Thanks, Big Media, for punishing those of us who play by your rules and pay for your crappy content.

  4. Chris Coyier says:

    I thought I read somewhere that a law (or policy or something) was being passed that required those DVD trailers to be skippable.

  5. Tonya says:

    I haven’t been to an actual movie theatre in some time. And call me naive for being a little shocked at a $6 medium popcorn, but damn.

    When did they start playing actual commercials for products before the movies? Not just still ads, but full-on television commercials? It was annoying, loud and I couldn’t think straight or talk to my movie companion before the show. I was really pissed off at being hostage to it.

    Add that to the two cell phones that went off during the movie, the amazing amount of movie patrons who really don’t get it that they are NOT at home and should shut the @#*! up; throw in the $6 ($6!?) for a medium popcorn and I am so outta there. It’s just not worth it.

    No more movie theatres for me. I think I’m getting old.