CinemaCon: Will Disney And Marvel Make Interactive Gaming The Next Texting In Movie Theaters?

JEN YAMATO
April 18, 2013
CinemaCon: Can Star-Driven 2013 Slate Power Sony To Top Their Best Year Ever?

Sparks flew last year at CinemaCon when Regal CEO Amy Miles and IMAX’s Greg Foster floated the idea of allowing texting in theaters. So how fast will audiences reject in-theater gaming? Disney’s Second Screen Live program, introduced this week at CinemaCon, encourages moviegoers to play interactive games on their iPads while watching a film in a theater. A home video version for select Disney Blu-Ray titles launched in 2011. “Of course you hear a lot from exhibition, ‘we don’t allow cell phones’”, Disney Exhibitor Relations VP Nancy Klueter said this morning at a CinemaCon panel on theater showmanship. “This screening would be inviting those people to bring their technology so you wouldn’t be offending them”. Disney and their exhibition partners hope the ploy will bring younger audiences back to theaters. When the program tested with The Nightmare Before Christmas, “50 percent of the audience had an iPad”, Klueter said. The initiative is still young. Theaters will have to install wifi or some way for users to connect to the Second Screen experience. Disney hasn’t announced which of their films will get the live interactive treatment but Disney classics are strong contenders with the company’s older-skewing superhero slate potentially to follow, Klueter told me: “Marvel will probably fit in there at some time”.

Related: Is It Time To Let Moviegoers Send Texts During A Film?
Related: Will Social Media Re-Invigorate Moviegoing?

Related stories

Marvel’s ‘The Avengers’ $185.1M Overseas: Continues Breaking Box Office Records

Pixar Sets 3 Original Toons; Disney Confirms ‘Muppets 2′: CinemaCon

UPDATE: ‘Iron Man 3′ Tickets Not On Sale Yet By Some Theater Chains Because Of Dispute With Disney: Movie Due May 3rd

Get more from Deadline.com: Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Newsletter

What to Read Next