Letter Signed By CEO Adam Aron Says AMC Has No Plans To Allow Texting
AMC Theatres and its CEO Adam Aron were recently in the news for comments that Aron made suggesting the movie theater chain may test allowing patrons to text during movies. The company has backed away from that plan after an intense backlash from movie-goers.
The controversy arose from an interview Aron, the CEO of AMC Theatres owner AMC Entertainment, gave to Variety during CinemaCon. In the interview published on Variety‘s website, Aron addressed his time in charge this far and his plans for the company’s future. He addressed improving food options available as well as bolstering the loyalty programs. It was when he turned his attention to attracting more Millennials that things took a turn.
“When you tell a 22-year-old to turn off the phone, don’t ruin the movie, they hear please cut off your left arm above the elbow.”
He went on to speculate that the company may try making certain showings more “texting friendly.” Reactions were swift and one-sided.
Tweets rolled in from movie fans across the country telling the theater chain how much they hated people texting during movies and how much they hated Aron’s speculation. AMC Theatres sent tweets from their own account attempting to clarify the remarks, but mostly to no avail.
The New York Post headlined their post on the controversy Yet another pastime is about to be ruined to accommodate Millennials.
AMC Theatres sent the following email to those on its mailing list earlier today. The email, signed by Adam Aron, reiterates his commitment to improving the food options at theaters as well as the company’s loyalty program while stressing that the company is throwing out the whole texting-in-theaters idea.
To our AMC Guests,
At AMC, we are committed to innovation and to being imaginative in our efforts to deliver you the best. We strive every single day to make your movie going experience at AMC Theatres simply amazing. You love the magic of movies, and we love doing all we can to make them all the more magical for you.
During the past few days, you may have heard media reports about another idea AMC Theatres was considering, testing whether some movie goers might want texting allowed in a small selection of our theatres. Unlike the many AMC advancements that you have applauded, we have heard loud and clear that this is a concept our audience does not want. In this age of social media, we get feedback from you almost instantaneously and as such, we are constantly listening. Accordingly, just as instantaneously, this is an idea that we have relegated to the cutting room floor.
With your advice in hand, there will be NO TEXTING ALLOWED in any of the auditoriums at AMC Theatres. Not today, not tomorrow and not in the foreseeable future.
Instead, we’ll focus on our other ideas to delight and entertain you. In the next few years, we intend to invest more than $1 billion to continuously enhance our theatres and systems. At AMC, you’ll feel our commitment to providing you with the absolute best in sight and sound technology, a significant increase to the number of our large screens including the incomparable experiences created by IMAX and Dolby Cinema, much more comfortable seating including our hugely popular recliners, new sumptuous food and beverage offerings, a more engaging AMC Stubs program, as well as dramatically richer content in an enhanced web site and more functional smartphone app. These are all in our immediate future- and yours — across the country at AMC.
We’ll continue to be as creative as we can to elevate the AMC experience, doing so in partnership with you, our guests, and never in a way that will compromise your love of coming out to the movies.
So, as always, we invite you to join us in sharing the excitement of seeing stories told well. However, when the lights dim, we’ll remember your advice that your fellow moviegoers should turn off their phones.
AMC Theatres has been a pioneer in the industry since the first theater opened in 1920. They have more than 300 locations across the country and boast that 200 million people visits its theaters annually. The company announced its intent to buy rival Carmike last month for $1.1 billion. The deal will make the combined comapny the biggest theater chain in the world with more than 600 locations in 45 states and Washington, D.C.
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