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Author Topic: 4:00pm or 5:00pm?
Eric Hooper
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 532
From: Fort Worth, TX, USA
Registered: May 2003


 - posted 04-23-2015 10:11 PM      Profile for Eric Hooper   Email Eric Hooper   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Which showtime do you find gets more business? When you schedule your showtimes, do you tend to schedule them in the 4:00pm hour (4:00pm, 4:15pm, 4:30pm, etc) or in the 5:00pm hour (5:00pm, 5:15pm, 5:30pm) based upon whether one attracts more business than the other?

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Marcel Birgelen
Film God

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From: Maastricht, Limburg, Netherlands
Registered: Feb 2012


 - posted 04-24-2015 01:38 AM      Profile for Marcel Birgelen   Email Marcel Birgelen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I guess it is at least somewhat dependent on your local situation. The obvious problem here is that you cannot play multiple movies in the same auditorium at once, if you find a fix for that, then your problem is solved. [Smile]

Around here, on any given normal weekday, it wouldn't make a difference if you start your show at 4pm, 4:30pm, 5pm or 5:30pm, because everybody is either still at work, commuting home or just starting dinner. So, in that case it would be better to start the show earlier (4pm or 4:30pm), so your theater will guaranteed to be be free and properly cleaned between the only time slot that really matters on a normal business day around here: between 19:30pm and 20:30pm

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Martin McCaffery
Film God

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From: Montgomery, AL
Registered: Jun 99


 - posted 04-24-2015 07:57 AM      Profile for Martin McCaffery   Author's Homepage   Email Martin McCaffery   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
We don't do a full day schedule, but I can safely say that during daylight savings time, with a movie aimed at little old broads, the 5:00 slot does really well. They get out before it is dark and in time to have supper.

Other wise, anytime before 7:00pm is pretty dead.

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Ken Lackner
Phenomenal Film Handler

Posts: 1907
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Sep 2001


 - posted 04-24-2015 08:01 AM      Profile for Ken Lackner   Email Ken Lackner   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Chicks don't like to be called broads, bro.

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Martin McCaffery
Film God

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From: Montgomery, AL
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 - posted 04-24-2015 09:00 AM      Profile for Martin McCaffery   Author's Homepage   Email Martin McCaffery   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Little Old Broad is neither age nor gender specific [evil]

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

Posts: 2253
From: Lakeport, CA USA
Registered: Jan 2004


 - posted 04-24-2015 01:42 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
During the off season, I never run anything in the 5:00 hour. Even if a movie is short enough for 5 shows a day (assuming the first show starts no earlier than about 12:30), I always program for 4 shows (roughly 1:00, 4:00, 7:00, 9:30). I've found that generally speaking the shows in the 5:00 hour don't do nearly as much business.

My guess is that because it's around dinner time, or commute time on the week days.

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Dennis Benjamin
Phenomenal Film Handler

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From: Denton, MD
Registered: Feb 2002


 - posted 04-24-2015 02:08 PM      Profile for Dennis Benjamin   Author's Homepage   Email Dennis Benjamin   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I think it depends on two factors: Specific location (clientele) and how many screens you have

Here where I am the 1 o'clocks, 4 o'clocks, and 7 o'clocks work well. The only time we have a 5 o'clock show is for the short kid's shows: 1 something, 3 something, 5 something, 7 something, and as early as your 9 o'clock can be.

If you are a large multiplex or a megaplex, by default - you are going to have 5 something shows and 6 something shows.

I tend to steer clear of starting anything between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. if I can help it at all. I also try to keep 10 minutes in between start times of individual movies. Again, the larger your location is the more probability you are going to have to stagger start times differently (like 5 minutes in between). I never, ever, ever, start two movies at the same time.

I have done studies on these things and it is surprising how much the showtimes affect the per cap at the concession stand.

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

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From: Lakeport, CA USA
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 - posted 04-24-2015 03:55 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Dennis, I agree with you about not starting movies at the same time. However, I find it's more important to keep the same show times week to week as people will look at the times on Wednesday or Thursday and expect them to be the same on Friday. Generally the only time I have two movies starting at the same time is when I have something in it's third or fourth week and the running time of the new movie makes it difficult to not overlap without setting a show time outside of what I consider to be the prime times.

The only time I change the show times on a holdover movie is when there is a change to the number of shows - for example when switching from two screens to one, or splitting a screen with another title.

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Monte L Fullmer
Film God

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From: Nampa, Idaho, USA
Registered: Nov 2004


 - posted 04-24-2015 05:35 PM      Profile for Monte L Fullmer   Email Monte L Fullmer   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Eric Hooper
When you schedule your showtimes, do you tend to schedule them in the 4:00pm hour (4:00pm, 4:15pm, 4:30pm, etc) or in the 5:00pm hour (5:00pm, 5:15pm, 5:30pm) based upon whether one attracts more business than the other?
Speaking from "old school" experiences, the 4pm set do better since it is in an area when some people are getting off of work and want to hit a show before dinner time.

And whereas, the 5pm sets are going to be slower due to people getting home and heading into dinner time.

Been this way for ages - good luck. Monte

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Jonathan Goeldner
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From: Washington, District of Columbia
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 - posted 04-30-2015 09:07 AM      Profile for Jonathan Goeldner   Email Jonathan Goeldner   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I prefer 5 o'clock showings - good time afterwards for dinner.

thread digression:

I also wholeheartedly approve of pre-11am screenings - in the DC area, AMC Tysons, Angelika Mosaic, Cinema Arts all have early morning screenings which is great (and cheap) - some of us have later work hours and can pencil/work in a morning screening much more easier than the typical afternoon/evening screenings.

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

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From: Lakeport, CA USA
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 - posted 04-30-2015 07:21 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
quote: Jonathan Goeldner
I also wholeheartedly approve of pre-11am screenings
In major markets it makes sense to have the early shows. There will always be enough people who turn out to make it worth while. In my market we have found that anything starting before about 12:30 will have significantly less attendance then movies starting after 12:30. This is true even the opening weekend of a major blockbuster. As a rule I avoid scheduling anything to start before 12:30 for this reason. Plus it sometimes creates staffing issues with the weekdays.

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Jonathan Goeldner
Phenomenal Film Handler

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From: Washington, District of Columbia
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 - posted 05-01-2015 03:35 PM      Profile for Jonathan Goeldner   Email Jonathan Goeldner   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
a 10:20am screening of 'Ex Machina' on a Monday no less, over at the Angelika last week - had close to maybe five dozen folk - I was very surprised (what? none of y'all have jobs? [Wink] [I know I don't] ) - the one area of town I don't get is Bethesda Maryland, with the number of retirees living in and around downtown Bethesda - I'm sure the Landmark could easily do morning screenings; Arclight Bethesda might do them over the summer months

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Eric Hooper
Jedi Master Film Handler

Posts: 532
From: Fort Worth, TX, USA
Registered: May 2003


 - posted 05-08-2015 01:55 PM      Profile for Eric Hooper   Email Eric Hooper   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
I see some theaters running 3:15 or 3:30 shows (on movies that are 1:45 in length), and then waiting to start their evening shows until 6:45, 7:00, 7:15, etc. Basically the 3:30 show ends about 5:15 or 5:30, and the auditorium sits empty until the 6:45, 7:00, 7:15 showtime. What would be the reason or advantage to do this?

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Justin Hamaker
Film God

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From: Lakeport, CA USA
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 - posted 05-08-2015 04:35 PM      Profile for Justin Hamaker   Author's Homepage   Email Justin Hamaker   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Eric, the reason is that running another show in the 5:00 hour would cause the theatre to have to push the 7:00 show to a later time - more like 7:30. They may have found that the movies gross better if they can start around 6:45-7:00.

As I mentioned earlier, except in the summer season I only run 4 shows a day on all movies - meaning I have one around 4:00 and one around 7:00. Yes, that means the auditorium is sitting idle for longer periods, but it saves energy on the projector and life on the bulb, plus it allows me to save labor costs. Experience has shown that the shows in the 5:00 hour tend to have the lowest attendance numbers. Unless we're selling out, it's not like the 5th show of the day is going to result in a bunch of extra tickets sold.

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