Regal Cinemas, the biggest movie-theater chain in the United States has announced a security service fee of 25% for movies depicting gang or hip-hop culture. There will also be a curfew on these movies limiting their showings to no later than 9 P.M.. With movie ticket prices hitting an all-time high last summer, an average of $8.61 per viewer this will raise the price to $10.75 for movies of a certain genre.
Joyce Davenport North American spokesperson for Regal Cinemas explained the fees in a press conference today. Davenport told the press “Movies like Straight Outta Compton and Chi-Raq force us to add extra security due to fighting and assaults inside and outside the theaters. We are barely breaking even on this category of film due to added security and insurance costs.” When asked if this policy was targeting the African American audiences Davenport was quick to reply. “We are not putting this security service fee on all African American films. Movies like 12 Years a Slave or The Butler would not be affected by the price increase.
Many African American directors including Tyler Perry are outraged by the decision by Regal Cinemas. “If I decide to create “Tyler Perry’s Medea Busts a Rhyme” or even “Tyler Perry’s Medea Busts a Cap” there is no logical reason why my fans should pay extra to see the film,” said a visibly upset Perry.
Not everyone is upset by Regal Cinemas’ new rules. Chief Fletcher Daniels of the NYPD’s Major Crimes Division thinks this is a great idea. Daniels told the New York Post “Having earlier seatings of these movies will hopefully cut down on people drinking before the films. Most of the incidents we respond to at theaters are alcohol related and are typically at later showings of the films. “