Boston Area, MA
I work at a movie theater. I work the concessions but I've worked long enough to know a little something-something about ushering and cashiers. And a little bit of what managers do. Ask me anything!
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Well the ushers have found condoms while cleaning the theaters before. And they don't normally check theaters unless they get a complaint. Especially if there's like 3 people watching the movie. And there's no cameras in the screen room itself despite those movie commercials showing people getting scared. However.... the best story I've heard is not about 2 patrons........ but about a patron and an employee! She gave him a BJ behind a stand and was caught on camera. The managers pulled her aside later and told her not to do it again.. she doesn't work there anymore. I've got tons of stories of all kinds. I can write volumes. Some more exciting than others. EDIT: Recently, an usher walked into a theater just to check on it. It looked empty, until he noticed a couple having sex in the back! After he told the whole establishment about it, nobody confronted the couple and they stayed through the whole movie. Would have been too awkward I guess.
If it's in director's hall the usher will kick you out because those seats are pricey and reserved. Otherwise, they don't care. People sneak in all the time and they think they're being really slick. Hell, I do it even though i get free passes. If they catch you and you're nice about it, they'll probably let you stay. If you're a jerk and disruptive, you bet they'll kick you out and may even call a manager.
I'm sure the ushers do it all the time. If they get caught, depending on the managers mood or how business is going, they might give the usher a warning or just go write them up. Friends normally ask for the use of the employees free passes
Thats a tough one. This is what I think happens and it might be really different for smaller theaters" the theater picks what movies they want to show. Sometimes, they'll have an independent film or a really old one from the 1940's or something. Sometimes, an incredibly anticipated movie might come out like, the avengers would be soon, and we'll be sold out. Then the theater will pay for ADDITIONAL prints, get rid of the ones no one is paying for anymore and replace it with the popular movie. I hate days like these. The theater will never really make a large profit from ticket sales alone as 10% of it go to the theater. The rest go to the people who made the movie. Which is y u can only be given free passes for a movie you walked out on and can't get a refund. You'd have to get that from mel Gibson himself (south park reference ;)). Most of the profits comes from food sales, which is why it's so expensive. Generally, anywhere that sells tickets, like ball parks, don't profit from tickets and profit from food. Every year, the prices of some of the food might get raised a quarter because the employees had to be paid more. And that's all I really know :)
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It happens everyone in a while as not everyone is willing to sit through a movie they hate. As I said before, only if you leave within the first 30 min. But I remember that tickets are NOT REFUNDABLE but they will give you a free passes for whenever you may want to watch a movie. If you watch the whole movie and hate it then decide that you want to be compensated, it's not going to happen. They reason that if you watched the whole thing, it must have been not that bad and you just want free passes.
My theater actually has this. The more I think about the question, the more I don't like the idea. Its great for the customer as they can go in their movie, order food and avoid lines. However, there's a bit of an argument on who makes the food. They dont have a problem getting soda, popcorn and candy, but we also have a coffee shop, ice cream, pizza,burgers, fried dough, ect. waiters expect the concessionists to get the food for them. This might be fine on slow days. But it can be really irritating on busy days when we have huge lines and we have to stop taking customers and help the waiters that cut everyone and get their food. I feel that it's easier to just coach them as I'm getting a different order but sometimes I'm so stressed from the number of customers I have that I don't want to be holding someone's hand. But not everyone is cooperative. The waiter sometimes doesn't care for the quality of the food as they just want to get rid of an order or the concessionists might not want them to handle preparing the food because they're not trained for it and might mess up everything. Also, they are paid the same wage as me but they can keep tips and I'm not allowed to accept tips. Not fair :(
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