AMC Entertainment CEO Adam Aron has squashed the idea that the theater chain is open to allowing texting in certain auditoriums.
In a statement released on social media, Aron wrote, “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.”
Aron’s letter addressed to AMC guests comes after making comments that received swift backlash from both movie fans and industry professionals.
“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,” Aron told Variety. “You can’t tell a 22-year-old to turn off their cellphone. That’s not how they live their life.”
Even Alamo Drafthouse CEO Tim League responded to Aron’s statement about how the exhibition company is open to allowing texting in its theaters, saying that Drafthouse has a firm anti-texting policy in place.
“Innovation in this direction could seriously hurt our industry,” he said. “When it comes to our core business, creating a special environment for our customers to experience new stories for the first time, there is absolutely no place for the distraction of a lit phone screen.”
See the full statement below.
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 website 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.
NO TEXTING AT AMC. Won't happen. You spoke. We listened. Quickly, that idea has been sent to the cutting room floor. pic.twitter.com/JR0fo5megR
— AMC Theatres (@AMCTheatres) April 15, 2016