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Special Features & Articles
NEW CONTENT THIS WEEK
Showtime Cover
What Direction is Exhibition Headed?

By Dan Klusmann

Keynote Address

By Dan Klusmann

Showtime Cover
What Direction is Exhibition Headed?

By Dan Klusmann

Keynote Address

By Dan Klusmann

Showtime Cover
What Direction is Exhibition Headed?

By Dan Klusmann

Keynote Address

By Dan Klusmann

Showtime Cover
What Direction is Exhibition Headed?

By Dan Klusmann

Keynote Address

By Dan Klusmann

Films
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Bad Trip
Black Widow
Dream Horse
Greyhound
In The Heights
Mulan
Promising Young Woman
Run
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Spiral
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Woman In The Window
True To The Game 2
04/10/20
Trolls World Tour
04/17/20
My Spy
The Secret: Dare To Dream
05/08/20
The High Note
05/22/20
Military Wives
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
05/29/20
Artemis Fowl
Irresistible
The Green Knight
06/12/20
Candyman
Selfie Dad
06/19/20
Fatale
Soul
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Bad Trip
Black Widow
Dream Horse
Greyhound
In The Heights
Mulan
Promising Young Woman
Run
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Spiral
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Woman In The Window
True To The Game 2
04/10/20
Trolls World Tour
04/17/20
My Spy
The Secret: Dare To Dream
05/08/20
The High Note
05/22/20
Military Wives
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
05/29/20
Artemis Fowl
Irresistible
The Green Knight
06/12/20
Candyman
Selfie Dad
06/19/20
Fatale
Soul
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Bad Trip
Black Widow
Dream Horse
Greyhound
In The Heights
Mulan
Promising Young Woman
Run
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Spiral
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Woman In The Window
True To The Game 2
04/10/20
Trolls World Tour
04/17/20
My Spy
The Secret: Dare To Dream
05/08/20
The High Note
05/22/20
Military Wives
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
05/29/20
Artemis Fowl
Irresistible
The Green Knight
06/12/20
Candyman
Selfie Dad
06/19/20
Fatale
Soul
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Bad Trip
Black Widow
Dream Horse
Greyhound
In The Heights
Mulan
Promising Young Woman
Run
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Spiral
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Woman In The Window
True To The Game 2
04/10/20
Trolls World Tour
04/17/20
My Spy
The Secret: Dare To Dream
05/08/20
The High Note
05/22/20
Military Wives
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
05/29/20
Artemis Fowl
Irresistible
The Green Knight
06/12/20
Candyman
Selfie Dad
06/19/20
Fatale
Soul
Sponsors
10,000 Bonus
Arcangelo Entertainment
Card Right Group
Golden Link
Jack Roe
Louana
Mobilario
Movies To Be Released
Odells
Omniterm
Pot O Gold
Proctor Company
Promotion in Motion
Ready Theatre Systems
Retreiver
Reynolds & Reynolds
Sensible Cinema Software
Sonic
St Jude
Telescopic
Ushio
Vision Media
White Castle
Will Rogers
10,000 Bonus
Arcangelo Entertainment
Card Right Group
Golden Link
Jack Roe
Louana
Mobilario
Movies To Be Released
Odells
Omniterm
Pot O Gold
Proctor Company
Promotion in Motion
Ready Theatre Systems
Retreiver
Reynolds & Reynolds
Sensible Cinema Software
Sonic
St Jude
Telescopic
Ushio
Vision Media
White Castle
Will Rogers
10,000 Bonus
Arcangelo Entertainment
Card Right Group
Golden Link
Jack Roe
Louana
Mobilario
Movies To Be Released
Odells
Omniterm
Pot O Gold
Proctor Company
Promotion in Motion
Ready Theatre Systems
Retreiver
Reynolds & Reynolds
Sensible Cinema Software
Sonic
St Jude
Telescopic
Ushio
Vision Media
White Castle
Will Rogers
10,000 Bonus
Arcangelo Entertainment
Card Right Group
Golden Link
Jack Roe
Louana
Mobilario
Movies To Be Released
Odells
Omniterm
Pot O Gold
Proctor Company
Promotion in Motion
Ready Theatre Systems
Retreiver
Reynolds & Reynolds
Sensible Cinema Software
Sonic
St Jude
Telescopic
Ushio
Vision Media
White Castle
Will Rogers

Showtime

The theatre industry’s official marketing
preview guide

SHOWTIME TABLE OF CONTENTS
WEEK OF April 2, 2020

Special Features & Articles
NEW CONTENT THIS WEEK
What Direction is Exhibition Headed?

By Dan Klusmann

Keynote Address

By Dan Klusmann

What Direction is Exhibition Headed?

By Dan Klusmann

Keynote Address

By Dan Klusmann

Films
RELEASE DATESTUDIOALPHABETICALA - Z
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Bad Trip
Black Widow
Dream Horse
Greyhound
In The Heights
Mulan
Promising Young Woman
Run
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Spiral
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Woman In The Window
True To The Game 2
04/10/20
Trolls World Tour
04/17/20
My Spy
The Secret: Dare To Dream
05/08/20
The High Note
05/22/20
Military Wives
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
05/29/20
Artemis Fowl
Irresistible
The Green Knight
06/12/20
Candyman
Selfie Dad
06/19/20
Fatale
Soul
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Bad Trip
Black Widow
Dream Horse
Greyhound
In The Heights
Mulan
Promising Young Woman
Run
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Spiral
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Woman In The Window
True To The Game 2
04/10/20
Trolls World Tour
04/17/20
My Spy
The Secret: Dare To Dream
05/08/20
The High Note
05/22/20
Military Wives
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
05/29/20
Artemis Fowl
Irresistible
The Green Knight
06/12/20
Candyman
Selfie Dad
06/19/20
Fatale
Soul
A24 Films
Saint Maud
The Green Knight
Atlas Distribution Company
Selfie Dad
Bleecker Street
Dream Horse
Military Wives
Faith Media Distribution
True To The Game 2
Focus Features
Irresistible
Promising Young Woman
The High Note
Lionsgate Films
Antebellum
Fatale
Run
Spiral
Paramount Pictures
A Quiet Place Part II
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
Roadside Attractions
The Secret: Dare To Dream
STX Entertainment
My Spy
Searchlight Pictures
Antlers
The Personal History of David Copperfield
Sony Pictures
Greyhound
United Artists Releasing
Bad Trip
Universal Pictures
Candyman
Trolls World Tour
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Artemis Fowl
Black Widow
Mulan
Soul
The New Mutants
The Woman In The Window
Warner Bros.
In The Heights
Scoob!
A24 Films
Saint Maud
The Green Knight
Atlas Distribution Company
Selfie Dad
Bleecker Street
Dream Horse
Military Wives
Faith Media Distribution
True To The Game 2
Focus Features
Irresistible
Promising Young Woman
The High Note
Lionsgate Films
Antebellum
Fatale
Run
Spiral
Paramount Pictures
A Quiet Place Part II
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
Roadside Attractions
The Secret: Dare To Dream
STX Entertainment
My Spy
Searchlight Pictures
Antlers
The Personal History of David Copperfield
Sony Pictures
Greyhound
United Artists Releasing
Bad Trip
Universal Pictures
Candyman
Trolls World Tour
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Artemis Fowl
Black Widow
Mulan
Soul
The New Mutants
The Woman In The Window
Warner Bros.
In The Heights
Scoob!
A
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Artemis Fowl
B
Bad Trip
Black Widow
C
Candyman
D
Dream Horse
F
Fatale
G
Greyhound
I
In The Heights
Irresistible
M
Military Wives
Mulan
My Spy
P
Promising Young Woman
R
Run
S
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Selfie Dad
Soul
Spiral
T
The Green Knight
The High Note
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Secret: Dare To Dream
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
The Woman In The Window
Trolls World Tour
True To The Game 2
A
A Quiet Place Part II
Antebellum
Antlers
Artemis Fowl
B
Bad Trip
Black Widow
C
Candyman
D
Dream Horse
F
Fatale
G
Greyhound
I
In The Heights
Irresistible
M
Military Wives
Mulan
My Spy
P
Promising Young Woman
R
Run
S
Saint Maud
Scoob!
Selfie Dad
Soul
Spiral
T
The Green Knight
The High Note
The New Mutants
The Personal History of David Copperfield
The Secret: Dare To Dream
The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
The Woman In The Window
Trolls World Tour
True To The Game 2
Sponsors
10,000 Bonus
Arcangelo Entertainment
Card Right Group
Golden Link
Jack Roe
Louana
Mobilario
Movies To Be Released
Odells
Omniterm
Pot O Gold
Proctor Company
Promotion in Motion
Ready Theatre Systems
Retreiver
Reynolds & Reynolds
Sensible Cinema Software
Sonic
St Jude
Telescopic
Ushio
Vision Media
White Castle
Will Rogers
10,000 Bonus
Arcangelo Entertainment
Card Right Group
Golden Link
Jack Roe
Louana
Mobilario
Movies To Be Released
Odells
Omniterm
Pot O Gold
Proctor Company
Promotion in Motion
Ready Theatre Systems
Retreiver
Reynolds & Reynolds
Sensible Cinema Software
Sonic
St Jude
Telescopic
Ushio
Vision Media
White Castle
Will Rogers
How to Use ShowTime (PDF)

Trolls World Tour
LAST UPDATED: 03/30/2020

Trolls World Tour - One Sheet
Synopsis:
Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake return in an all-star sequel to DreamWorks Animation’s 2016 musical hit: Trolls World Tour. In an adventure that will take them well beyond what they’ve known before, Poppy (Kendrick) and Branch (Timberlake) discover that they are but one of six different Troll tribes scattered over six different lands and devoted to six different kinds of music: Funk, Country, Techno, Classical, Pop and Rock. Their world is about to get a lot bigger and a whole lot louder.
A member of hard-rock royalty, Queen Barb (Rachel Bloom), aided by her father King Thrash (Ozzy Osbourne), wants to destroy all other kinds of music to let rock reign supreme. With the fate of the world at stake, Poppy and Branch, along with their friends — Biggie (James Corden), Chenille (Caroline Hjelt), Satin (Aino Jawo), Cooper (Ron Funches) and Guy Diamond (Kunal Nayyar) — set out to visit all the other lands to unify the Trolls in harmony against Barb, who’s looking to upstage them all.
Cast as members of the different musical tribes is one the largest, and most acclaimed, groups of musical talent ever assembled for an animated film. From the land of Funk are Mary J. Blige, George Clinton, and Anderson.Paak. Representing Country is Kelly Clarkson as Delta Dawn, with Sam Rockwell as Hickory and Flula Borg as Dickory. J Balvin brings Reggaeton, while Ester Dean adds to the Pop tribe. Anthony Ramos brings the beat in Techno and Jamie Dornan covers smooth jazz. World-renowned conductor and violinist Gustavo Dudamel appears as Trollzart and Charlyne Yi as Pennywhistle from the land of Classical. And Kenan Thompson raps as a hip-hop newborn Troll named Tiny Diamond.
Trolls World Tour is directed by Walt Dohrn, who served as co-director on Trolls, and is produced by returning producer Gina Shay. The film is co-directed by David P. Smith and co-produced by Kelly Cooney Cilella, both of whom worked on the first TrollsTrolls World Tour will also feature original music by Justin Timberlake, who earned an Oscar® nomination for his song for 2016’s Trolls, “Can’t Stop the Feeling!,” and a score by Theodore Shapiro (2016’s Ghostbusters, The Devil Wears Prada).
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My Spy
LAST UPDATED: 03/19/2020

My Spy - One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
Almost Totally In Control.
Synopsis:
My Spy follows JJ, a hardened CIA operative (Dave Bautista), who has been demoted and finds himself at the mercy of a precocious 9-year-old girl named Sophie (Chloe Coleman) after he is sent undercover to surveil her family. In exchange for not blowing JJ's cover, Sophie convinces him to spend time with her and teach her to be a spy. Despite his reluctance, JJ finds he is no match for Sophie's disarming charm and wit.
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The Secret: Dare To Dream
LAST UPDATED: 02/13/2020

The Secret: Dare To Dream - One Sheet
Synopsis:
As a young widow struggles to raise three children on her own, a powerful storm brings a devastating challenge and a mysterious man into her life.A In just a few short days, his presence reignites the familyas spirit, but he carries a secret, and that secret could change everything. Inspired by the 2006 best-selling book 'The Secret' by Rhona Byrne.
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The High Note
LAST UPDATED: 04/01/2020

The High Note - One Sheet
Synopsis:
Set in the dazzling world of the LA music scene comes the story of Grace Davis (Tracee Ellis Ross), a superstar whose talent, and ego, have reached unbelievable heights. Maggie (Dakota Johnson) is Grace’s overworked personal assistant who’s stuck running errands, but still aspires to her childhood dream of becoming a music producer. When Grace’s manager (Ice Cube) presents her with a choice that could alter the course of her career, Maggie and Grace come up with a plan that could change their lives forever.
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Military Wives
LAST UPDATED: 03/16/2020

Military Wives - One Sheet
Tag Line:
United They Sing.
Synopsis:
Military Wives, directed by Peter Cattaneo and starring Academy Award nominee Kristin Scott Thomas and Sharon Horgan, centers on a group of women in England whose partners are away serving in Afghanistan. Faced with the men's absences, they form a choir and quickly find themselves at the center of a media sensation and global movement.
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The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run
LAST UPDATED: 01/29/2020

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On The Run - Teaser One Sheet
Tag Line:
A Huge Journey To Find A Tiny Friend
Synopsis:
This Memorial Day weekend, SpongeBob SquarePants, his best friend Patrick Star and the rest of the gang from Bikini Bottom hit the big screen in the first-ever all CGI SpongeBob motion picture event. After SpongeBob’s beloved pet snail Gary is snail-napped, he and Patrick embark on an epic adventure to The Lost City of Atlantic City to bring Gary home. As they navigate the delights and dangers on this perilous and hilarious rescue mission, SpongeBob and his pals prove there’s nothing stronger than the power of friendship.
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Artemis Fowl
LAST UPDATED: 03/17/2020

Artemis Fowl - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Time To Believe.
Synopsis:
Directed by Kenneth Branagh and based on the beloved book by Eoin Colfer, Artemis Fowl follows 12-year-old genius Artemis Fowl, a descendant of a long line of criminal masterminds, as he finds himself in a battle of strength and cunning against a powerful, hidden race of fairies who may be behind his father’s disappearance.
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Irresistible
LAST UPDATED: 03/02/2020

Irresistible - One Sheet
Synopsis:
A Democrat strategist helps a retired veteran run for mayor in a small, conservative Midwest town.
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The Green Knight
LAST UPDATED: 03/02/2020

The Green Knight - One Sheet
Synopsis:
An epic fantasy adventure based on the timeless Arthurian legend, The Green Knight tells the story of Sir Gawain (Dev Patel), King Arthur's reckless and headstrong nephew, who embarks on a daring quest to confront the eponymous Green Knight, a gigantic emerald-skinned stranger and tester of men. Gawain contends with ghosts, giants, thieves, and schemers in what becomes a deeper journey to define his character and prove his worth in the eyes of his family and kingdom by facing the ultimate challenger. From visionary filmmaker David Lowery comes a fresh and bold spin on a classic tale from the knights of the round table.
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Candyman
LAST UPDATED: 02/27/2020

Candyman - Teaser One Sheet
Tag Line:
Dare To Say His Name
Synopsis:
This summer, Oscar® winner Jordan Peele unleashes a fresh take on the blood-chilling urban legend that your friend’s older sibling probably told you about at a sleepover: Candyman. Rising filmmaker Nia DaCosta (Little Woods) directs this contemporary incarnation of the cult classic.
For as long as residents can remember, the housing projects of Chicago’s Cabrini Green neighborhood were terrorized by a word-of-mouth ghost story about a supernatural killer with a hook for a hand, easily summoned by those daring to repeat his name five times into a mirror. In present day, a decade after the last of the Cabrini towers were torn down, visual artist Anthony McCoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II; HBO’s Watchmen, Us) and his girlfriend, gallery director Brianna Cartwright (Teyonah Parris; If Beale Street Could Talk, The Photograph), move into a luxury loft condo in Cabrini, now gentrified beyond recognition and inhabited by upwardly mobile millennials.
With Anthony’s painting career on the brink of stalling, a chance encounter with a Cabrini Green old-timer (Colman Domingo; HBO’s Euphoria, Assassination Nation) exposes Anthony to the tragically horrific nature of the true story behind Candyman. Anxious to maintain his status in the Chicago art world, Anthony begins to explore these macabre details in his studio as fresh grist for paintings, unknowingly opening a door to a complex past that unravels his own sanity and unleashes a terrifyingly viral wave of violence that puts him on a collision course with destiny.
Universal Pictures presents, from Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures and Jordan Peele and Win Rosenfeld’s Monkeypaw Productions, in association with BRON Creative, Candyman. Candyman is directed by DaCosta, and is produced by Ian Cooper (Us), Rosenfeld and Peele. The screenplay is by Peele & Rosenfeld and DaCosta. The film is based on the 1992 film Candyman, written by Bernard Rose, and the short story “The Forbidden” by Clive Barker. The film’s executive producers are David Kern, Aaron L. Gilbert and Jason Cloth.
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Selfie Dad
LAST UPDATED: 03/04/2020

Selfie Dad - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Read The Bible. Change Your Life.
Synopsis:
Selfie Dad's Ben Marcus (Michael Jr.) has a problem. He’s healthy, happily married with two beautiful kids, and has a successful career as a reality TV editor—but he isn’t happy. Despite everything he has achieved, a hole has developed in his life, a hole that nothing seems to fill. Yep, Ben Marcus is facing a mid-life crisis. However, Ben thinks he knows how to solve his problem. He believes that what’s missing from his life is laughter, more specifically he thinks fulfilling his long set aside dream of becoming a comedian will make him complete. And what better way to jump start his comedic career than with a YouTube channel? Initially, Ben’s videos fall flatter than a pancake. That is until he receives some unasked for help from his son, who posts a video of Ben failing miserably at a home improvement project online. #fail Much to Ben’s surprise (and his daughter’s embarrassment) the video is a hit and quickly goes viral! Pretty soon Ben has a new career as 'Selfie Dad,' and he’s an award-winning social media phenomenon with Internet celebrity. Everything is going according to plan, so why is he still unhappy? That’s when Micky, a brash IT guy studying to be a pastor, enters Ben’s life. Mickey, a wise-beyond-his-years 25-year-old, knows what Ben’s life is really missing: God. Will Ben be open to receiving the Word? Will he allow God to enter his heart and change his life for the better forever? Watch Selfie Dad to find out.
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Fatale
LAST UPDATED: 03/23/2020

Synopsis:
In this suspenseful and provocative psychological thriller, a successful sports agent, Darren (Michael Ealy), watches his perfect life slowly disappear when he becomes entangled in a police investigation led by a discredited, disgraced and determined detective (Hilary Swank), with whom he had a wild one night stand.
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Soul
LAST UPDATED: 03/12/2020

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures 
06/19/2020 
NR 
 
 
Soul - Teaser One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
Everybody Has A Soul. Joe Gardner Is About To Find His.
Synopsis:
Joe Gardner is a middle-school band teacher who gets the chance of a lifetime to play at the best jazz club in town. But one small misstep takes him from the streets of New York City to The Great Before – a fantastical place where new souls get their personalities, quirks and interests before they go to Earth. Determined to return to his life, Joe teams up with a precocious soul, 22, who has never understood the appeal of the human experience. As Joe desperately tries to show 22 what’s great about living, he may just discover the answers to some of life’s most important questions.
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A Quiet Place Part II
LAST UPDATED: 03/19/2020

A Quiet Place Part II - One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
Silence Is Not Enough
Synopsis:
Following the deadly events at home, the Abbott family (Emily Blunt, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe) must now face the terrors of the outside world as they continue their fight survival in silence. Forced to venture into the unknown, they quickly realize that the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats that lurk beyond the sand path.
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Antebellum
LAST UPDATED: 03/18/2020

Antebellum - One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
If It Chooses You Nothing Can Save You.
Synopsis:
Successful author Veronica Henley (Janelle Monáe) finds herself trapped in a horrifying reality and must uncover the mind-bending mystery before it’s too late. Antebellum is a terrifying new thriller from the producer of the acclaimed films Get Out and Us, and groundbreaking directors Gerard Bush and Christoper Renz (Bush+Renz) - an exciting new voice in filmmaking.
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Antlers
LAST UPDATED: 03/12/2020

Antlers - One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
Prey It Desires Not You
Synopsis:
In Antlers, a small-town Oregon teacher (Keri Russell) and her brother (Jesse Plemons), the local sheriff, discover that a young student (JT Corbitt) is harboring a dangerous secret with frightening consequences.
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Bad Trip
LAST UPDATED: 03/18/2020

Bad Trip - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Real People. Real Pranks.
Synopsis:
From a producer of Jackass and Bad Grandpa, this hidden camera comedy follows two best friends as they go on a cross-country road trip full of hilarious, inventive pranks, pulling its real-life audience into the mayhem. 
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Black Widow
LAST UPDATED: 03/17/2020

Black Widow - One Sheet
Synopsis:
At birth the Black Widow (aka Natasha Romanova) is given to the KGB, which grooms her to become its ultimate operative. When the U.S.S.R. breaks up, the government tries to kill her as the action moves to present-day New York, where she is a freelance operative.
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Dream Horse
LAST UPDATED: 03/20/2020

Dream Horse - One Sheet
Synopsis:
Dream Horse tells the true story of Jan Vokes (Academy Award nominee Toni Colette), a Welsh cleaner and bartender, who decides to breed and rear a race horse. She persuades her neighbors and friends to contribute financially to the scheme. The group's unlikely investment plan pays off as the horse rises through the ranks and puts them in a race for the national championship.
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Greyhound
LAST UPDATED: 03/31/2020

Greyhound - One Sheet
Synopsis:
In a thrilling story inspired by actual events from the Battle of the Atlantic, Tom Hanks stars as a first-time captain who leads a convoy of allied ships carrying thousands of soldiers across the treacherous waters of the “Black Pit” to the front lines of WW2. With no air cover protection for 5 days, the captain and his convoy must battle the surrounding enemy Nazi U-boats in order to give the allies a chance to win the war. The film is directed by Aaron Schneider from a screenplay by Hanks.
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In The Heights
LAST UPDATED: 03/24/2020

In The Heights - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Turn Up The Volume On Your Dreams
Synopsis:
The creator of Hamilton and the director of Crazy Rich Asians invite you to the event of the summer, where the streets are made of music and little dreams become big... In the Heights. Lights up on Washington Heights...The scent of a cafecito caliente hangs in the air just outside of the 181st Street subway stop, where a kaleidoscope of dreams rallies this vibrant and tight-knit community. At the intersection of it all is the likeable, magnetic bodega owner Usnavi (Anthony Ramos), who saves every penny from his daily grind as he hopes, imagines and sings about a better life. In the Heights fuses Lin-Manuel Miranda’s kinetic music and lyrics with director Jon M. Chu’s lively and authentic eye for storytelling to capture a world very much of its place, but universal in its experience.
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Mulan
LAST UPDATED: 04/01/2020

Mulan - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Loyal. Brave. True.
Synopsis:
When the Emperor of China issues a decree that one man per family must serve in the Imperial Army to defend the country from Northern invaders, Hua Mulan, the eldest daughter of an honored warrior, steps in to take the place of her ailing father. Masquerading as a man, Hua Jun, she is tested every step of the way and must harness her inner-strength and embrace her true potential. It is an epic journey that will transform her into an honored warrior and earn her the respect of a grateful nation…and a proud father. “Mulan” features a celebrated international cast that includes: Yifei Liu as Mulan; Donnie Yen as Commander Tung; Jason Scott Lee as Böri Khan; Yoson An as Cheng Honghui; with Gong Li as Xianniang and Jet Li as the Emperor. The film is directed by Niki Caro from a screenplay by Rick Jaffa & Amanda Silver and Elizabeth Martin & Lauren Hynek based on the narrative poem “The Ballad of Mulan.”
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Promising Young Woman
LAST UPDATED: 03/18/2020

Promising Young Woman - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Take Her Home And Take Your Chances
Synopsis:
From visionary director Emerald Fennell (Killing Eve) comes a delicious new take on revenge. Everyone said Cassie (Carey Mulligan) was a promising young woman... until a mysterious event abruptly derailed her future. But nothing in Cassie’s life is what it appears to be: she’s wickedly smart, tantalizingly cunning, and she’s living a secret double life by night.  Now, an unexpected encounter is about to give Cassie a chance to right the wrongs of the past in this thrilling and wildly entertaining story.
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Run
LAST UPDATED: 03/18/2020

Run - One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
You Can't Escape A Mother's Love
Synopsis:
They say you can never escape a mother's love... but for Chloe, that's not a comfort -- it's a threat. There's something unnatural, even sinister about the relationship between Chloe (newcomer Kiera Allen) and her mom, Diane (Sarah Paulson). Diane has raised her daughter in total isolation, controlling every move she's made since birth, and there are secrets that Chloe's only beginning to grasp. From the visionary writers, producers and director of the breakout film Searching, comes a suspense thriller that shows that when mom gets a little too close, you need to Run.
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Saint Maud
LAST UPDATED: 03/24/2020

Saint Maud - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Your Savior Is Coming.
Synopsis:
The debut film from writer-director Rose Glass, Saint Maud is a chilling and boldly original vision of faith, madness, and salvation in a fallen world. Maud, a newly devout hospice nurse, becomes obsessed with saving her dying patient's soul -- but sinister forces, and her own sinful past, threaten to put an end to her holy calling.
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Scoob!
LAST UPDATED: 03/30/2020

Scoob! - One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
Mystery Loves Company.
Synopsis:
Scoob! reveals how lifelong friends Scooby and Shaggy first met and how they joined with young detectives Fred, Velma, and Daphne to form the famous Mystery Inc. Now, with hundreds of cases solved and adventures shared, Scooby and the gang face their biggest, most challenging mystery ever: a plot to unleash the ghost dog Cerberus upon the world. As they race to stop this global “dogpocalypse,” the gang discovers that Scooby has a secret legacy and an epic destiny greater than anyone imagined.
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Spiral
LAST UPDATED: 03/18/2020

Spiral - One Sheet
Synopsis:
A sadistic mastermind unleashes a twisted form of justice in Spiral, the terrifying new chapter from the book of Saw. Working in the shadow of an esteemed police veteran (Samuel L. Jackson), brash Detective Ezekiel “Zeke” Banks (Chris Rock) and his rookie partner (Max Minghella) take charge of a grisly investigation into murders that are eerily reminiscent of the city’s gruesome past. Unwittingly entrapped in a deepening mystery, Zeke finds himself at the center of the killer’s morbid game.
Spiral stars Chris Rock, Max Minghella, Marisol Nichols, and Samuel L. Jackson, and is produced by the original Saw team of Mark Burg and Oren Koules. The film is directed by Darren Lynn Bousman and written by Josh Stolberg & Pete Goldfinger.
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The New Mutants
LAST UPDATED: 03/12/2020

The New Mutants - One Sheet 2
Tag Line:
There Is Something New To Fear.
Synopsis:
20th Century Studios in association with Marvel Entertainment presents The New Mutants, an original horror thriller set in an isolated hospital where a group of young mutants is being held for psychiatric monitoring. When strange occurrences begin to take place, both their new mutant abilities and their friendships will be tested as they battle to try and make it out alive.
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The Personal History of David Copperfield
LAST UPDATED: 03/17/2020

The Personal History Of David Copperfield - One Sheet
Synopsis:
An avid Dickens fan, Armando Iannucci (the award-winning writer/director of The Thick of It, In the Loop, Veep and The Death of Stalin) adapts here, alongside frequent collaborator Simon Blackwell, employing his comedic mastery and vivid characterizations to bring to life one of Dickens' most cherished characters in The Personal History Of David Copperfield. From birth to infancy, from adolescence to adulthood, the good-hearted David Copperfield is surrounded by kindness, wickedness, poverty and wealth, as he meets an array of remarkable characters in Victorian England. As David sets out to be a writer, in his quest for family, friendship, romance and status, the story of his life is the most seductive tale of all. The film stars Dev Patel in the title role alongside a wealth of British talent including Tilda Swinton, Hugh Laurie, Peter Capaldi, Ben Whishaw and Paul Whitehouse.
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The Woman In The Window
LAST UPDATED: 03/17/2020

The Woman In The Window - One Sheet
Tag Line:
Seeing Is Believing
Synopsis:
In The Woman in the Window, a psychological suspense thriller directed by Joe Wright, an agoraphobic child psychologist befriends a neighbor across the street from her New York City brownstone, only to see her own life turned upside down when the woman disappears and she suspects foul play. A stellar ensemble cast brings Tracy Letts’ screenplay based on the gripping, best-selling novel to life, where shocking secrets are revealed, and no one—and nothing—is what it seems. Starring Amy Adams, Gary Oldman, Anthony Mackie, Wyatt Russell, Brian Tyree Henry, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Julianne Moore, “The Woman in the Window” is produced by Scott Rudin, Eli Bush and Anthony Katagas.
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True To The Game 2
LAST UPDATED: 03/19/2020

Synopsis:
True To The Game II picks up a year after the first installment of True to the Game, following the lives of the characters affected by Quadir's murder. Separating herself from Philly's dangerous scene while still mourning from the death of Quadir, Gena has reinvented herself as a journalist, living and working in NYC. At a crossroads in her career, Gena comes across an opportunity to go to LA, and decides to use the time to find herself. Although Gena is far from home, her life in Philly seems to always make an appearance. Someone with ties to Quadir has hijacked Jerrell's shipment and Jerrel has hit the streets determined to find out who. Jerrell is determined to get paid by any means necessary and he'll start with Gena.
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What Direction is Exhibition Headed?

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If we address this question in terms of the laws of economics, as well as comparisons to other businesses who have faced similar challenges, the answer comes in focus.

In the early days, the supply of “movies” was limited because theatres were the only venue in which to view them.  As their entertainment value improved, so did the demand.  High demand and low supply equals success in any business.

Fast forward to today and, while movies are better than ever, the supply and accessibility to them has gone through the roof.  Movie theft on the Internet, pay per view, Netflix, DVDs, Red Box, cable pay tv channels, and free tv offer non-stop movie viewing options by the thousands.  Other competitive entertainment choices such as sporting events and gaming are also growing.  This abundance of supply has also brought the cost of seeing movies way down, everywhere that is except at the movie theatre!

Convenience is another factor impacting the viewing of movies.  The public can now watch them whenever they want, in the convenience of their own homes.  They can stop and start them as the wish, and the viewing quality is excellent, and constantly getting better.

Theatres, who once provided movie entertainment for the masses, are gradually being relegated to offering a premium experience to a shrinking audience.  While we tout premium sound, BIG picture, enjoying a film with an audience, getting out of the home, climate control, restaurant quality food options, and luxury seating, we still lose the price battle when non-affluent patrons ask:  “Why should I pay $50 to take my wife or girlfriend out (or a $100 to take my family out) when we can enjoy the same movie (plus Coca-Cola and popcorn) all for less than $10?  It simply makes no “economic” sense!

Exhibition can rightly claim that, when taking into account inflation, the cost of a movie ticket is no higher than it was 10, 20, or even 50 years ago.  (We can’t however, make that claim when it comes to our concession pricing!)  The problem here is not that our pricing is high, but that our competition’s pricing is so low!

As a comparison, Amazon is putting many big box stores out of business.  They are doing this via just two advantages - price and convenience!  These are the same two competitive factors that exhibition is facing.

There are other warnings.  The public looks for entertainment on the weekends when the work week for most is over, so weekend business is still pretty good.  Weekday business, however, has been going downhill for years.  Empty auditoriums, almost unheard of 20 years ago, are becoming commonplace on many weekday nights at most theatres.  The other alarming factor is that, while some blockbusters continue to impress, smaller movies often die at the box office.  There is no urgency to see them because it is so easy for patrons to wait and catch them later at home. 

Based on all of the above, we have no choice but to conclude that our business is going to continue getting worse, rather than better.  That’s not to say that many theatres who provide an enticing venue and who are located in “upscale” markets won't continue to thrive.  Also, well-run theatres in good and growing markets are likely to continue to prosper.  There are, however, many “average” theatres fighting the losing battle of constantly having to invest in upgrades for a stagnant or declining number of patrons!

So, what is the answer?

Growing our audience through offering an enjoyable and fun experience at a competitive price is our ONLY option for increasing our market share.  “Price” is the key word in this solution.  We have two options:

1.  By adding to “normal” business through local price incentive promotions aimed at targeted groups.  As an example, if we engage a fast food restaurant to distribute thousands of discount coupons to their customers in a week that are good at our theatre, many of those recipients (who would not normally have attended) will take advantage of the savings and the suggestion to attend a movie at our theatre.  Thus we have our “normal” business, but we attract additional patrons via the marketing.  The only problem here is that most theatres have abandoned marketing under the assumption that it’s the studio’s job.  Weekly promotions designed to target specific groups and add to normal business require time, effort and expertise which is sadly lacking at most theatres.  There is also the question of studio per capitas to deal with.

2.  We can drop the price of admission for everyone!  If we charged just $5/admission, and that price was properly marketed, attendance would increase substantially!  If, by going from a $10 to a $5 admission, and assuming a 55% average film rental, and our concession per capita holding steady at $4.50 with a 70% profit margin, we would only need to increase attendance by 33% to have the same gross income.  If lowering from $10 to $7/admission, attendance would need to increase by less than 20% to achieve the same gross profit.  Most every other retail business has sales to boost business, so doesn't it also make sense for us?

Movie-going was once compared to a freight train.  When business is slow (and the train is hardly moving) it is hard to boost business and get the train moving quickly. Once it has picked up a full head of steam, however, and lots of patrons are in our theatre enjoying good movies, seeing trailers to upcoming product, and sharing the experience with friends, business tends to keep moving at a brisk pace.  Our job is to get that train moving, which is a real challenge when coming off a slow summer and heading into the fall!

Still, with great films, a good experience for our customers, and EFFECTIVE MARKETING there are options for making sure our future is a rosy one!

(Share your comments regarding this article by emailing dan@imeonline.com and we will feature them here!  Indicate if you’d prefer to be credited by name or remain anonymous.)

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Keynote Address

Lessons Learned
Lessons Learned
Watch out for candy girls
Watch out for candy girls
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Expect the unexpected
Expect the unexpected
Look in the mirror
Look in the mirror
North Central NATO Keynote Address: Sheraton Minneapolis West Hotel, May 16, 2017 by Dan Klusmann

Over half a century ago… in a place called Billings Montana... I went to pick up my high school friend from the theatre where he worked.
When I walked into that theatre something dawned on me… The girls there were REALLY cute!
Free movies and working with cute girls sounded so much better than my job at the grocery store, that I asked my friend if he could get me hired.
So started my show biz career as relief marquee changer working for a dollar an hour.

About a year later, after several promotions, I was the theatre’s manager, and several years after that.... I was engaged to one of those candy girls.

As I go through this speech tonight I will try and relate some of the lessons I’ve learned in those 50+ years in this business.
Who knows, for some of you younger managers out there, maybe my discoveries, will help you in YOUR theatre careers.

So, lesson #1: Watch out for candy girls! (I can say that because my wife did not accompany me on this trip.)
In fact I asked for her advice on this talk and all she said was “Well whatever you do, don’t try to sound smart.. or funny.. or charming... Just be yourself.” So here it goes...

Back in those early years it was easy for me to develop a passion for both marketing and showmanship, which go hand-in-hand.
You see, our theatre had just one screen.
Our competition was a large national chain, so they got most of the big films.
When we’d get a good movie, we couldn’t afford just to unlock the doors and see who showed up.
We went out and promoted the film with stunts, media attention, big out-of-theatre displays, and tie-ins with other businesses and organizations.
We were SHOWMEN, which meant that our marketing efforts had a positive impact on the number of people coming to our movies!

The fact that has not changed through the years is our Lesson #2.
Today’s theatre managers can have a significant impact on the business your theatres generate.
It, however requires marketing and showmanship.

Showmanship separates you, the theatre manager, from the managers of say McDonalds, J.C. Penney, or Ace Hardware.
Through the Independent Marketing Edge and then ShowTime we’ve awarded almost half a million dollars to theatre managers through the years to encourage and reward showmanship.
And yet showmanship is dying.
Maybe I’m “old school” and times are changing. I definitely felt “old school” as I cut out photos and taped them to poster board for this easil. Dummy, I thought, a modern marketer would have featured these lessons in a Power Point presentation with a computer and big screen behind me. Then, again, a real showman might have had ring girls in bathing suits holding the boards - anything to grab your attention!

Showmanship is noticed and it is appreciated!
I was reminded of this most recently at CinemaCon this year.
Despite all the movie stars on hand, it was Chris Aronson, president of 20th Century Fox, who impressed me the most as he made a grand entrance and performed as part of a dance group sporting neon lights on their clothing.
That’s Showmanship!
Or as Harry Houdini once said: “The secret of showmanship consists not of what you really do, but what the mystery-loving public thinks you do.”
And we ARE, after all, in a business of make believe!

Marketing is an attitude, not a department.
The only purpose of any business is to bring in a customer, and there are really only two ways to do it – through marketing or innovation!
If you think that marketing is someone else’s job then you are missing out on the pride and satisfaction of knowing that you can impact the business your theatre generates.
Others, however, will recognize this and someday they will likely be your boss!
I remember reading years ago where American Airlines calculated that if they had one more customer on each flight in a given year, the difference in revenue would have been about $114 million.
How much is just one more customer every showing worth to your theatre?

When I was still a young manager and also attending college, our theatre owners decided to lease a Billings drive in, so they brought in a YOUNG city manager from Butte Montana to supervise our two theatres.
He had just graduated from Western Montana College with a teaching degree.
We worked together for over 20 years and helped build TOI Theatres into a 6 state regional circuit.
Later he went on to head up NATO of California and Nevada, and build ShoWest into the largest theatre convention in the world, and then he helped build Cinemark into the most successful international theatre circuit in history.
Not bad for a kid from Butte Montana.
My friend, Tim Warner, just retired as Cinemark’s CEO.
I, and many others, learned a lot from him through the years, but this Lesson #3 about achieving success is one of the most important.


There is a LOT of incompetence in this world, and in our industry.
By constantly educating yourself, competing on all levels, having a positive attitude, truly caring about people, seeking out and emulating mentors, surrounding yourself with people smarter than you, being honest, and always having confidence in yourself and your abilities, you WILL succeed.
No one is better than you if you give it your all.
Look in the mirror. That’s the competition you CAN control, not the other guy.
Be better today than you were yesterday.

A few years after graduating from college and putting in a stint in the Army, I rejoined TOI and opened a twin theatre in Helena Montana.
There, I started a children’s matinee series and convinced the parent teacher organizations in all the grade schools to sell series tickets to the kids.
It took a little time and effort, but by the third year of the series we were selling out two afternoon showings a day, three days a week, in both 300 seat auditoriums.
The police department had to come and direct traffic because the theatre was so busy with parents dropping off over 3,000 children a week.
It was cool because sometimes I would be out in the public and a little kid would point me out to their parents and say “Look, there’s the movie man.”
So... Lesson #4: Don’t forget the kids.
They are our teen and adult patrons of tomorrow. Turn them into movie-lovers!

Building any specialty film series is a great way to increase business.
Whether it’s a children’s matinees, late shows for teens, afternoon showings for seniors, art films, or operas, you can increase business by establishing a film series, building it, and pleasing your customers.
Movie-going is a habit that can be nourished through these series, so don’t forget this lesson #5. Build upon your successes and make them bigger and better!
If you have a good Facebook page, or loyalty club, or relationships with businesses, organizations or media, build on them, strengthen them, and improve them each and every year! .... Don’t ever take them for granted.

In 1988, when we sold our company to Excellence Theatres, I was taking their executives around to our theatres in Bozeman Montana.
It was a cold, snowy Tuesday night and we arrived at one of our older single screen theatres.
A smile crossed my face when we arrived and found taped to the box office window a sign that said “Sorry, .....Sold Out!”

The film was part of an art show series I had started.
The next day, Larry Hanson, who was one of the executives with Excellence at the time, told me that he checked the grosses for the previous night and that our lowly Rialto Theatre in Bozeman Montana had the biggest gross of all Excellence Theatres in 17 states.
So, whether it was the children’s series in Helena or the art film series in Bozeman, success came not from starting from scratch each year, but rather, building on our successes and making them bigger and better each succeeding year.

At the time of the sale of TOI to Excellence I was Vice President and Director of Marketing.
I got the job as director of marketing because I won most of the manager contests our company ran.
My early training in showmanship helped me win the film promotion contests.
When it came to winning concession contests I discovered our Lesson #6. Other businesses WANT to work with us on promotions, so don’t be afraid to reach out to them.
The movie business is glamorous and appealing to them.

They also want access to our customers.
I won those concession contests by using the Value Added Concept.
We could get more patrons to purchase our popcorn/drink combos by offering them an additional $10 in discounts and/or free items from other businesses with their purchase.
Per caps went up, customers were thrilled that they actually got a great deal at our concession stand, our staff enjoyed having an effective sales pitch, and the participating businesses were pleased with the exposure and new customers they generated from the promotion.

Using the value-added concept is just one example of always exceeding customer expectations which is Lesson #7.

One night at our theatre, it dumped a foot and a half of snow in less than two hours.
There were maybe 20 cars in our parking lot so a half hour before the final show let out I grabbed a push broom and cleaned the snow off of all the car windows in the lot.
The next day I received a phone call from a patron thanking me, and later we received a nice thank you note from another customer.

Exceeding expectations pleased customers and made me feel good.
Even a simple “Thanks for coming” as customers left the theatre showed our appreciation and was noticed.
Success is a given when you constantly strive to exceed customer expectations, show appreciation and deliver a great movie-going experience.
Sales go up and down, but service stays forever, and people always remember how you made them feel!

Lesson 8 deals with giving back and obtaining some balance in our lives.
It’s clear that this 70 year old body up here has traveled a long way,.... and some of the roads weren’t paved, ... but inside it is that same young energetic kid wanting to work with pretty girls.

Despite my wife constantly telling me to grow up, the mind hasn’t gotten old.
The years will fly by, so make the most of them and during that journey, constantly be seeking ways to give back to your family, your employees, your industry, charities & your community.
Someday, you too will be old, and you will want to look back on your life with pride and feel good about how you gave back and helped others.
Or, as a philosopher once said, “What you are is God’s gift to you, what you become is your gift to God.”

You have a couple of great examples here at this convention.
Exhibitors across the nation are aware of how hard Jeff Logan has worked in NATO to benefit independent theatre owners.
Dale Haider has better things to do with his time than put on this convention, but he too appreciates the satisfaction of giving back.

Speaking of conventions, I used to chair the Rocky Mountain Theatre Convention and grew to understand how much work it was to put on a great event EVERY year.
Larry Hanson was instrumental in starting the Geneva Convention, so he and I hatched a plan to combine the two conventions and alternate locations each year, so each would only have to put on a convention every other year. We called it the Great States Convention.
I was to chair the second one out West, so I wanted to make it the best theatre convention ever, and definitely better than Geneva the previous year.
I spent an entire year planning out every minute of a 4-day convention and put together great panels, speakers, screenings, studio presentations, a sold out trade show, and one of the first demonstrations of a digital projector for our industry.

Day 1 started with a golf tournament.
Before leaving for the tournament that morning I turned on the TV, and was devastated by the site of the the World Trade Tours burning.
It was Sept. 11, 2001.
That was New York though, and I was in Montana surrounded by the beauty of Glacier National Park, so it shouldn’t impact me.
Well, when I returned from the golf course the hotel had 75 messages for me from speakers and other program participants whose flights had been grounded so they would be unable to attend.
My year of planning came crashing down with those towers 2000 miles away.
The digital projector arrived, but the technician who knew how to assemble it was stuck in California.
Many of the other events had to be changed as I literally had to wing it.

The convention, however, is one that none of us will ever forget.
Our final night banquet was held outdoors on a beautiful Montana night.
Attendees could fish for trout, shoot skeet, or just marvel at the elk that wandered around the rod and gun club that hosted us.
As bus loads of slightly inebriated attendees returned to the hotel that night they were singing patriotic songs like “God Bless America.”
That week we all gave something back to each other and appreciated how lucky we were.

So.... Lesson #9: Always be prepared for the unexpected.

In my years as a manager I dealt with drunks, robbery, being assaulted, the death of an employee, lost children, electrical outages, falls, equipment breakdowns, customer heart attacks, choking victims, violent storms, flooding, and more.
When unexpected events happen, and they will, you will be tested.
Be prepared for the unexpected, be calm, and make sure that you and your team know the right things to do.
With little warning you can be a hero or the fall guy.

Lesson #10 centers on building a great team.

Theatre managers have an opportunity and responsibility, in that many of our employees are young and impressionable and they will look to you for leadership.
As you lead, make sure you show your employees that they are appreciated.
Attitudes are contagious. Is yours worth catching?
When a team develops a culture of supporting each other, hard work, customer service, excellence, and learning, its members can translate both their victories and failures into input for continuous growth and improvement.
This will allow your team to achieve extraordinary results with increased frequency, thus becoming an extraordinary team.

And, in building that team, get good at delegating.
Yes, you can do just about everything better than your employees, but you will never be a great leader if you fail to delegate.
“Good" leaders inspire people to have confidence in them, but “GREAT" leaders inspire people to have confidence in themselves!
Steve Jobs said it best: “My model for business is The Beatles. They balanced each other, and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. That’s how I see business: Great things in business are never done by one person, they’re done by a TEAM of people.”

And don’t forget that building a great team starts in the hiring process. In addition to the normal questions about work history and the like, don’t forget to factor in a great smile, personality, and their desire to serve and please people. Success is not just what you accomplish in YOUR life, it is also about what you inspire others to do.

Increasing theatre attendance is our priority #1, so, how many of you know the very best way to increase theatre attendance?
The answer is Lesson #11. Hands down, Gift Cards are your most important marketing program:
NOTHING can increase your theatre attendance more than a great gift card program, and yet most theatre managers do a poor job at it.

During November and December each year we have an opportunity in that the public goes into a buying frenzy as they search for holiday gifts to give family, friends, co-workers, customers, and service providers.
This is the one time of year where the public is hyper receptive to our marketing message.
Therefore it is critical to deliver that message to as many people as possible and as many times as possible.
Gift card signs hanging in your theatre lobby don’t even begin to scratch the surface of the potential for sales.
Some of the people who will receive this gift of movies rarely or never attend your theatre now, so you end up developing NEW customers.

When a movie gift card is burning a hole in a recipient’s wallet or purse, they will go to MORE movies.
It also doesn’t hurt that the income is received in advance, or that some of it is 100% profit because gift cards are sometimes lost or forgotten about.
Or, that as your gift cards can also be redeemed at the concession stand, they increase concession sales.
Look for all sorts of ways to get the word out and then make them VERY easy and convenient to purchase via your Website, the theatre, by phone, by mail, and at locations in busy shopping areas.

Work at developing and preparing this year's Gift Card program throughout September and October so it’s ready to turn big numbers for you in November and December.

I’ve also suggested to NATO that a national campaign in November and December promoting movie gift cards would be the smartest investment our industry could make.

In our ShowTime magazine we have been featuring “Show People” interviews with industry leaders.
One of the questions we ask is about their concerns for the future of our industry.
Therefore, I’d like to take this opportunity to share a couple of my concerns with you in the hope that possibly you might contribute to finding solutions.

The studios, in effect, are helping push us away from serving the masses like we once did.
Amenities such as food, alcohol, luxury recliners, reserved seating, and 3D are all steadily increasing the cost of movie-going.
While all these things are great, and allow us to serve patrons better, the studios think it’s more efficient to make their product available to the masses in their homes at a fraction of the price we charge.
As home viewing technology gets better and more convenient, that huge growing price differential between seeing a movie at a theatre and seeing it at home will result in us continuing to lose customers.
We often tout the COMMUNAL experience of seeing a film with an audience, and yet I’d be embarrassed to tell you how many times this past year I’ve watched a movie in my local theatre with NO one else in the auditorium.
On those occasions I'm actually LONELY in a theatre, and THAT has me worried!

Movies are one of the only businesses in the world where pricing is rarely used to increase sales and where the price of a Cadillac, such as Star Wars, is the same as a Yugo or a film that went straight to video.
If the studios are going to keep shrinking windows between us and the opportunity to see their product for next to nothing, then they should remove the per caps and let us do more to use price incentives and specials to increase attendance!
Let me share just one example:

On a given Monday through Thursday you will have “X” number of people coming to your theatre and paying full price as a result of normal studio and theatre marketing.
If another local business on a weekend has a lot of people coming to their store, or going to their Website, or checking out their Facebook page, what would happen if THEY invited their customers to “Enjoy a MOVIE this week at YOUR theatres!”
What if they gave THEIR customers a special coupon or code giving them $5 off on adult admissions to any movies that coming Monday through Thursday night?
And what if they took full credit for this gift so it came from them, not us?

Several things will happen.
First off the business will generate great PR with their customers.
Of all the people they give this bonus to, only a small number of them might have come to your theatre on those weekday nights anyway.
But, as a result of their gift, your theatre will enjoy far more additional people coming to the movies as a result of the special discount.

Movie going is often an impulse decision.
When it is suggested, and accompanied with an appealing incentive, the public responds.
By running this promotion with various merchants week to week, and not using the same ones regularly, you would reach new people and add to your attendance.
The net result is satisfied customers, happy marketing partners, a bigger gross on slow weekday nights, and maybe movie lovers like me will actually be able to enjoy that COMMUNAL experience again, and won’t be lonely any more.
A win-win for all involved.

The second of my concerns is our industry’s inability to market some very enjoyable films.

Some of the best movies of the year in terms of audience enjoyment end up doing relatively little business at our theatres.
I’m thinking of films such as Queen of Katwe, The Founder, The Shack, and more recently Gifted.
What might you do to help good, little films gross more?

Consider building a rapport with movie lovers in your town, maybe through your loyalty program, and alert them via email when you have a “Manager’s Pick” as far as a totally enjoyable film that you HIGHLY recommend.
Include some positive reviews, and offer incentives such as “the popcorn is on us” or the value-added bonuses from other merchants that I mentioned earlier.
Maybe even include an offer of a full refund if the film is not totally enjoyable.
If done right, and built upon, you will have the power to please customers and generate more business on little films you are proud to show. (Customers appreciate a heads up on a great movie!)

And now I interrupt this speech for a commercial:
While the young people in my office have dragged me kicking and screaming into the digital age, I AM excited about our new digital ShowTime.
If you have not yet checked it out, you can enjoy it free by registering as a fan at Silver Screen Insider.com.
It is cool and enjoyable to look at, and it will keep you abreast of the marketing of films you will be playing.

Now, back to the lessons: “I” may think the new ShowTime is great, but if YOU don’t, it will fail, so here’s Lesson #12:
Always seek honest feedback from customers and you will become smarter and more successful!


Warning though: While I told you to seek honest feedback from customers, that advise does not always hold true with your spouse.
Mine is always telling me that I’m over the hill and that I should retire.
I can’t do that, however, because I’d miss this industry and all the great people I’ve worked with and met.
I agree with George Burns who said: “Retirement at sixty-five is ridiculous. When I was sixty-five I still had pimples.”

Seeking feedback points out another lesson #13 on the importance of being a good listener.
Really listening to customers, employees, other business people, and mentors will pay off in countless ways.
Learn to listen more and talk less.
There was once an experiment conducted where a wife of a businessman accompanied him to a party where she knew none of the guests, and they didn’t know her.
She was instructed simply to listen to what others said, show interest, ask questions, and nod in agreement, but NEVER contribute anything.
The next day, guests at the party were asked for their opinions of her. She was described by them as bright, impressive, interesting, charismatic, and even articulate.
So, if you want to be successful, be a good listener!

Years ago there was a company called National Screen Service.
They handled distribution of trailers, 1-sheets and promotional items for many of the studios.
Each year they sponsored the National Screen Service Marketing Conference where theatre marketing directors met with their counterparts at the studios to discuss the marketing and promotion of upcoming films.

One of the first conferences was in Dallas TX at the Loews Anatole Hotel.
I was wandering the hotel’s halls one evening and made a wrong turn and ended up in the trade show of another industry - FUNERAL HOMES!
As I looked down the aisles of caskets, hearses, and embalming fluid vendors, one final Lesson hit me.

MOVIES!
We are very LUCKY to be involved in such a great business.
Be THANKFUL for it..... ENJOY it..... and CELEBRATE it!

And speaking of celebrating… this speech is over, and I like to celebrate endings -
as they hopefully precede new beginnings... and optimism that the best is yet to come!

So, thanks for inviting me!...
and, OH!
One more thing...
PLEASE don’t don’t let my wife know what I said here tonight!
Thank you!
Lessons Learned
Watch out for candy girls
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