Are Studios Forcing Us To See 3D Movies to Boost Box Office Tallies?

by on August 19, 2011

in Entertainment

Opinion Piece on Movie-Goers Coerced into Seeing 3D Movies.

Real 3D - 3D Movie Experience

For some time I had been waiting for both remakes, Conan the Barbarian and Fright Night, to hit my local theater. To my chagrin they both opened on the same weekend and since my time is limited, I could only pick one movie to go to. After some careful consideration, and horrid movie reviews of Marcus Nispel’s Conan, I decided to hit up Craig Gillespie’s Fright Night. Yet even during the written praise, one review I looked at questioned why Fright Night was even in 3D.

When I looked up the schedules from my local movie theaters, I noticed that my movie theater only had two 2D screenings per day and the other six screenings were in the 3D. That schedule is from 1 theater complex. Looking around, it seems repeated around my region. The pattern to the schedule had me thinking or wondering if this must be a studio-requested schedule manipulation.


The above observation generated the obvious question for myself and that was, “Are studios trying to (desperately) pump up box office earnings by forcing movie-goers into 3D screenings?” My first impression to my question is yes, they are.

First off, neither movie is an original, but rather a remake/reimagining of an iconic 80’s film. I’m guessing remakes aren’t all that they’re pumped up to be.

My second thought was that the distributing studios, Lionsgate (Conan) and Walt Disney (Fright Night) have so little faith in their screenplays that they want to try and snooker as much cash out as possible out of consumers from 3D screenings. My guess is that they’re hoping when movie-goers show up at the movie theater, they’ll settle for the 3D version since there are so few and ill-timed 2D screenings available.

My guess is that a decent quality movie isn’t afraid to have an equal number of screenings of both 2 & 3D, (Purely a guess), while other projects need to figure out how to break even or what not in any fashion possible.

I’m not angry, just frustrated. (I wouldn’t want to see me when I’m angry!) I get their perspective on the issue, but as a consumer, I have a few issues.

For one, I don’t think 3D is really worth most live-action movies. I think 3D has been incredible in the Disney animated features I’ve seen so far and the few select live-action features, like Transformers 3 and Tron. Plus in some cases, the movies are not worth the inflated ticket prices that are charged for 3D screenings.

I think that unless my schedule works out to see the only daytime screening of 3:40pm, I’m going to speak with my wallet and rent something.

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