Theater management changes affects students

By Michael Pepin

Unbeknownst to many, over winter break the Great Escape 16 movie theater franchise was sold to Regal Cinemas.  With this sudden change in ownership, many students and workers are wondering what will change in the movie theater.

“I was surprised when I learned that Great Escape was gone, but I understood that the owners had a good reason to sell it.  I don’t think that Regal will be that different than Great Escape; in fact I think it might be a good change since they are now a larger company,” said senior Gannon Yeaton.

While the majority of people do not think there will be a large change, senior Michael Clark remarks that most people have not realized a lot of the change because they do not come often.

“I was hired a week after Great Escape changed to Regal Theater, around late December and early January.  While a lot of things haven’t changed, the rules and policy are a lot more strict due to the fact that we are now part of a large corporation rather than a family business,” said Clark.

However, some believe that the future changes Regal theater will enact will be beneficial to customers.

“People might miss the Great Escape name, but you have a lot more access to reward benefits.  Regal plays some of the smaller movies that you would not find otherwise, or monthly special feature shows like operas.  Regal also has a lot more wiggle room than Great Escape because they are so big,” said senior Katelyn Rowe.

For the students working at Great Escape, there are many changes that customers would not see.

“Clocking in for work is more complicated now, you have to sign into this computer and the hours are more set in stone than they were before.  Everything is a lot more uptight than it was before, and we even now have secret inspections where the district manager goes to the theater as a customer to evaluate how the service is.  There is a lot more pressure when you are working there now because you know everything is being tracked,” said Rowe.

Regal Theater does not plan on immediately changing the name of the theater due to the fact that they may lose customers and it costs an exorbitant amount.

“I see these changes being better in the future because Great Escape is now a large corporation, they have access to more resources and it makes it a better experience for viewers.  If someone didn’t know that Great Escape had changed hands, then I doubt they would be able to tell.  A movie theater will always be a movie theater, whether it is Regal or Great Escape,” said Clark.

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