Audio – Zap rude moviegoers – Regal CEO

November 30, 2006

Regal Entertainment Group CEO Michael CampbellRegal Entertainment CEO Michael Campbell has got a new way to stop cellphone yappers, fist-swinging, knives-holding and gun-wielding thugs disturbing the peace in HIS movie theaters. The solution: four-buttons on a remote control.The company, which owns some 542 theaters, is testing a new wireless remote device in 25 of its locations that lets courteous and loyal Regal theater moviegoers alert ushers to annoying neighbors by pressing one of four buttons. (Press: 1. picture and sound issues ; 2. “disruptions”; 3. temperature 4. “Other”)This new device might be available nationwide by next year, Campbell said at the Reuters Media Summit in New York.Here’s the golden quote.

“We have had instances where we’ve had people get into physical battles in theatres where one customer will say to another, ‘shut off your cellphone’ or ‘shut up’ or whatever, we’ve had people assaulted with bats, knives, guns, people wait for you outside… So we’re trying to take the liabilities, that exposure, away from the customers… and back on us.”

See you at the movies!We collected some choice quotes below. You can also find the full 10-minute audio clip of his discussion of the device. (We were left puzzled over when to hit button “4”)Go to Reuters story from the summit.Aren’t ushers a cheaper solution?“I don’t think so.””These devices are fairly inexpensive, less than $100 a piece when you buy them in mass.””We want the customer to remain anonymous.””So it’s very inconspicuous.””We just don’t want to create a liability issue where you’ve got somebody who’s willing to provide this service for us being targeted by somebody else in the audience.””Back when I was a teenager there was still a reverence I think to some extent for the movie going experience. You knew when you went in that you weren’t supposed to talk, you weren’t supposed to disturb anybody and you certainly didn’t have cellphones.””There’s a whole generation out there today. They multi-task. They think they can do everything at the same time and every body else is going to be okay with that and it’s just not.”

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[…] Over the last few months, a new system called the Regal Guest Response System has been tested in a few of Regal Entertainment’s theaters. The announcement about its implementation came back in early August, and an update has come recently from the Regal CEO Michael Campbell during the Reuters media summit in New York City (via Engadget as well). […]

 
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