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TODAY'S QUESTION: Are digital 3D movie tickets worth the extra cost?

Monday, January 4, 2010 | 10:52 p.m. CST

Both Columbia theaters, Hollywood Stadium 14 and Goodrich Forum 8, now have the capability to show digital 3D movies. Hollywood installed its first digital 3D projector in early December.

However this new technology does not come cheap. Theaters have increased the price of 3D tickets to cover the added costs. Hollywood and Forum charge an extra $3 and $2.50 respectively.

Forum’s digital projector cost $400,000, as opposed to the standard 35mm, 2D projector, which costs around $60,000 on average, theater manager Brandon Casey said. The bulbs for digital projectors also cost almost twice as much as 35mm projectors and need to be replaced more frequently, Casey said.

This price increase isn’t deterring moviegoers from digital 3D films. “3D films have about 40 percent better ticket sales (than non 3D movies),” Casey said.  Hollywood has only shown one 3D film since it installed the first digital projector and has not yet established a proper baseline for comparing ticket sales. 

Three dollars may not be significant to movie watchers now, but as the trend of digital 3D catches on, standard 35 mm films may go the way of the VHS, forcing viewers to pay extra at the theaters more often.

Are digital 3D movie tickets worth the extra cost?


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Comments

Nathan Stephens January 5, 2010 | 8:37 a.m.

I went to see Avatar in 3-D last week at Hollywood and it was quite an experience. While I enjoyed the movie and the effects of 3-D, I did not like the fact that I had to pay $3 extra per ticket for the 3-D glasses. I am also concerned that the previews indicated that a slew of movies are coming out with the 3-D effect and from what I understand, the theaters will continue to charge $3 per ticket per movie. Then they ask you to recycle the 3-D glasses in the bin after the movie. Why not give a discounted rate for people who already have 3-D glasses from the last movie? It saves the consumer and it is more 'green' than the current recycling effort at the theater. I recognize that the theaters are paying for the special bulbs but aren't you making up for it with $5 candy bars, $5 fountain sodas and $5 buckets of popcorn? Theaters are making 'date night' more difficult during these difficult economic times.

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