Thanks to innovations like 3D and IMAX (or IMAX-ish), going to see a movie in theaters is an experience that a home theater really can’t match, even if a home theater has the benefit of comfier seats and no obnoxious strangers. The bosses of Regal Cinemas, one of the chains that have consolidated Americans’ away-from-home movie experience, understand this. So they’re going to raise ticket prices some more.
Talking to investors at the Barclays Global Technology, Media and Telecommunications Conference, Regal execs explained that ticket prices are going up 3-4% for regular old two-dimensional, regular-screen movies. That isn’t where the real money is coming from in the theater biz today, though. Regal’s own RPX ginormous screens let them add on a $5 upcharge from customers. 3D movies on regular-size screens increase prices by $3.50, and the chain can charge $6.50 more for admission to an IMAX film.
“[A]s long as we continue to provide that great, affordable out-of-home experience…people are going to continue to go to the movies,” CEO Amy Miles said at the conference. Yes, they’ll keep going, but how often will Americans be willing to see first-run movies in theaters as prices rise?