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3D, The Price Hike that Keeps on Giving

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Industry | March 26, 2012 |

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Industry | March 26, 2012 |

Remember how movie theaters started spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on the technology for this new wave of 3D, and audiences didn’t care? And then every other movie on the slate started being delayed in order to convert it half assed to 3D, and audiences still didn’t give a damn?

A funny thing happened. See since all of you assholes out there refused to buy tickets for 3D films, it turns out that theaters are suffering financially. So they’re being forced to do the only thing they can think of. They’re just going to raise the price of 2D pictures so that all the movie tickets cost the same. Don’t want to put movie theater glasses on just to see an inferior version of the same film as is playing next door, let alone pay for the honor of it? Tough.

Never mind that there has been exactly one film since this latest fad began that was actually worth watching in 3D. Never mind that movie theaters have been ignoring an unhappy customer base for decades that has been dwindling as television screens in home get bigger and bigger. Going to the movies today is indistinguishable from going to the movies twenty years ago other than the skyrocketing cost and the fact that the irritating teenagers are talking on phones instead of just to the other irritating teenagers. There are a handful of movie theaters that actually try to make customers happy instead of just demanding that they pay more for less. The ones that install 3D equipment and offer all manner of food as long you want popcorn or hotdogs, those are the ones that aren’t.

This really hit the Internet’s fan over the last few days because of a tiny industry magazine called Screen Trade Magazine that normally no one would ever pay attention to. But the CEO of Spotlight Theaters, Joe Paletta, has an article in which he gives a rundown of the current state of movie theaters with as cheerful an attitude as you can have when you are in complete and blissful denial about your entire industry.

Want to read the full article Mr. Paletta wrote? It’s here and it’s brilliant reading, and I swear I kept checking to see that there wasn’t an Onion logo somewhere on the page.

Steven Lloyd Wilson is the sci-fi and history editor. You can email him here or follow him on Twitter.

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