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Theater Owners Want to Cut the Audience a Break, Shorten Movie Trailers

May 30, 2013 | 1:17pm EDT

Credit: iStockphoto; No Credit

Trailers have long been a part of the moviegoing experience, but they may soon be getting shorter. According to The Hollywood Reporter, The National Association of Theater Owners wants to pass new regulations that cut the maximum length of movie trailers from 2 minutes and 30 seconds to just 2 minutes. Now, 30 seconds doesn’t seem like that much time, but when it comes to marketing a movie, this extra bit can be crucial. This is good news for those of us who doesn’t like sitting through 20 minutes of trailers, but bad news for the movie studios.

Some theater owners feel that trailers are too long and can give away too much of the plot of the movie, which upsets audiences. The studios disagree, believing that these new rules could seriously hurt their marketing strategy. A well-made movie trailer can pique the interest of the audience and get them excited for future releases — and putting such strict time constraints on them might make this harder. How would marketing for huge summer blockbusters change if the trailers could no longer send the message that the studios wanted them to?

Although NATO thinks that shortening trailers could increase ticket sales, that seems doubtful. Who’s to say theaters wouldn’t just play more of the shorter trailers? How about we get rid of the dumb car and insurance commercials before the movie instead? Those are what are really annoying.

Speaking of trailers... Here's one for Now You See Me, which hits theaters May 30. Unfortunately, this one is over two minutes.

Follow Mary Oates on Twitter @mary_oates and @Hollywood_com

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