So we’ve basically rationalized the fifty percent hike in movie prices due to 3D with three lines of reasoning. We rationalized that the movies cost more to make, that they looked better, and that the glasses were a little extra expense also. So then we realized that with the exception of a scant handful of films that were actually made for 3D, they look worse than normal films. Then we realized that whether a studio cuts a check for $10,000,000 to convert the film or not, it was already probably at $150,000,000 budget in the first place, and they charge us the same damned price regardless of the budget. Well, the final little chain of rationalization is getting yanked out now. Sony is refusing to pay for 3D glasses in theaters as of May of next year.
See, the theaters themselves are run on something akin to a sharecropping system, which is why they charge a week’s salary for a soda. They refused to show 3D films if they were expected to pick up the fifty cent per ticket that glasses aggregate out to. And since theaters only keep about 10% of first week ticket revenues, that’s sort of half the revenue they were getting anyway. So the various studios agreed to pay for glasses over the last couple of years, and now they’re pulling the rug out. Which means that 3D ticket prices will go up again to cover the cost for the theater.
I’m telling you right now, studios. If that ticket price goes up again, every time I go to the theater I’ll convince the theater owner to let me in for 50 cents less without glasses. And then when I write the review, I will spend at least two-thirds of the thousand words complaining about how fuzzy the movie was.