Wow...what a crazy past couple of days working at the theatre!! Traditionally this week is the busiest week of the year for all movie theatres nationwide. Why? Well it is traditionally the week that most people take off to spend time with their children while they are home from college and high school for Christmas/Winter break. Since everyone is home they tend to go to the movie theatre and see a few movies. The movie studios know this and try to bank on all they can from a busy holiday weekend! This year was no different.
Avatar, Sherlock Holmes, and Alvin & The Chimpmunks 2 were the top three movies in the box office nationwide this weekend. I will agree on this one since I worked Thursday through Sunday. I worked in the concession stand Thursday and Saturday while the other two days were in the box office. Saturday was the busiest day at the AMC theatre that I work at in Connecticut. We already knew it was going to be busy due to being the day after Christmas, but to add to the busyness...it rained all day!! The theatre was projected to have about 8500 guests come through the door, but since it rained all day the ending total attendance for Saturday was over 11,000 people!! This total breaks the record for the history of the theatre!! The last time we broke the record was last summer for Batman: The Dark Knight midnight premier when the attendance was just over 9,000 people. All weekend though you kept hearing shouts from the box office, "May I have your attention please, the (enter show time) of (enter movie title) is sold out!" Props to Adam Del Re to shouting these announcements out on Sunday and having the entire theatre lobby go completely silent while he was talking. It was awesome. :)
Saturday evening, one of my managers sent out a Facebook note for the AMC employees to read. I thought I would share part of the note.
"today, i saw a crew that was dedicated and determined. nobody was willing to give up or give in, and while people just kept streaming through the doors and shows were selling out left and right, we kept it together. i wanted to give you all my personal thanks that on a day like today, we were steadfast and cohesive. we showed the guests what we were made of. we cleaned every last piece of popcorn, served hundreds and hundreds of guests, and really made the difference. the rest of the week will be busy, but if we all can keep it going like we did tonight, nothing can stand in our way. don't forget that. keep your eye on the prize and know that we are breaking records and we couldn't do it without you. - Ben Goodman"
Lastly, I have complained before about guests coming to the theatre and being upset because their movie is sold out. Here are some tips again for you to remember when going to the movies on a busy holiday or big movie premier weekend.
- Buy tickets from Fandango.com to ensure you have tickets for the desired movie and arrive to the movie theatre about an hour before the movie starts.
- If you do not want to purchase tickets via the internet, go early in the morning to buy movie tickets for later in the day.
- Attend one of the first show times for the desired movie as those tend to be sometimes less busy than later in the day (especially on a friday).
- If you go to the movie theatre around the time your movie starts, have 2-3 back up movies that you would like to see, just in case your number one movie is sold out or close to be sold out.
- If you arrive at the movie theatre to find out that all three of your movies are sold out, DO NOT GET IN LINE to decide what to do. Your best bet is to try again on a less busy day.
- Do not get frustrated at the theatre employees because of how busy it is, as this just adds to their own stress from being so busy.