by Mike Masnick
Tue, Mar 25th 2008 9:30am
For the past few years, as home theaters have grown more and more common, we've seen movie theater owners constantly whining that they just can't compete with home theaters. They complain that if studios start releasing DVDs at the same time as theater runs, no one will come. This, of course, shows a profound misunderstanding of their own business -- which is to provide an enjoyable social experience that convinces people to go out. People can eat food at home where it's much cheaper, but most still go out to eat on occasion as well. They do so because it's a social experience and provides something that can be seen as different and better. So while too many theater owners seemed to think they couldn't offer anything better, it appears that a few of the big chains are at least realizing that if home theater screens are getting bigger, so should movie screens. Both AMC and Regal Entertainment are installing a bunch of new IMAX screens, recognizing that the IMAX experience still beats the home theater one. Now, if only these theaters would start improving other aspects of the theater-going experience as well.
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