Movie industry shakes up patrons

It’s been a rough old time in the movie industry lately. The last few years have seen a general decline in ticket sales, partly from the competition of video-piracy and video-games, but also because some punters actually prefer watching the latest releases on DVD from the comforts of their own home. With advances in home entertainment rapidly evolving, cinema owners are having to up the ante, launching sophisticated technology not available in the average home. Synchronised motion effects built into cinema seats are the industry’s latest tactic to attract moviegoers—and they could offer some creative advertising opportunities as well. 

Hoyts Cinemas has launched its new D-Box Motion Code technology – the first time New Zealanders have been able to experience the innovation that is taking off overseas. D-Box Motion Code is a unique, patented system that takes moviegoers right to the heart of the action through realistic motion effects in theatre seats that move perfectly in sync with the drama onscreen, creating an unsurpassed movie going experience. Think Rainbow’s End motion master–but better.

The technology is available at Hoyts Te Awa at The Base shopping centre in Hamilton. This month moviegoers will be able to experience the pod races in Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace with more realism than ever, followed by Mark Wahlberg’s new movie Contraband and John Carter of Mars 3D.

As 3D movies gain in popularity, brands are increasingly using that technology in their advertising. So will the ads be D-Box-ed as well? Hoyts New Zealand general manager Brian Eldridge says they are not aware of this having been done before and it may be a world first if it were done, but if a brand wanted to do this they would film the ad and send it to Canada for D-Box to encode it with synchronised movement. Economically speaking it might work if you wanted to have something playing long term.

“D-Box Motion Code is without a doubt the next level in entertainment and adds a whole new dimension to the cinema experience,” Eldridge says. “More and more Hollywood studios are embedding D-Box Motion Code in their theatrical releases and we’re finally giving New Zealand audiences the chance to experience it for themselves.”

Motion code technology is the latest in a long list of new innovations that can be found at the complex, including six 3D capable screens, 1500 seats and the latest Dolby 7.1 surround sound. Still not enough to lure you from  your lounge? How about private lounges, in theatre dining, luxury reclining chairs, a food emporium with an ice-cream parlour, wine cellar, delicatessen serving cheese and antipasto platters, candy dispensary and gourmet hot dogs?

Can’t get that at home.

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