Disney reportedly bans movie theater workers from seeing movies for free for weeks


As Marvel Cinematic Universe fans rush to theaters for the premiere of Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022), current and former movie theater employees are speaking out against Disney’s strict policies regarding their movie releases.

Related: Marvel Fans Furious Over ‘Doctor Strange 2’ Leaks, From ‘Watch No More’ Movie

image copyrightMarvel/Disney

According to several Twitter users, Disney insists that movie theaters do not allow their employees to view new movies for free for the first few weeks after a project’s release.

Twitter user Margaret “Molly” Rasberry (@RasberryRazz) started this conversation, writing that one of their favorite perks of working at a movie theater was free tickets, but they had to wait a month to see new Disney movies unless they want to. buy a full price ticket earlier. They tweeted:

One of the perks of working at the theater is free movies, with the exception of Disney, which threatens to pull its movies from the theater if an employee sees one of its movies for free during the opening month. We had to wait a month or buy a ticket to see a Disney movie. Pure indulgence.

Apparently Disney claims this is to avoid spoilers for their films, but the rule also applies to live-action remakes of classic Walt Disney Animation Studios films. From @RasberryRazz:

And the reasoning was spoilers. Yes, including their Disney remakes.

Related: Kevin Feige Admits Marvel Spoiled ‘Too Much’ From ‘Doctor Strange 2’

It should be noted, however, that live performances – including Aladdin (2019) and The beauty and the Beast (2017) – often feature new footage and songs that were not included in the original anime versions.

Frank Oz as Yoda
1 credit

Apparently the ban on seeing movies early for free includes both Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm properties.. Twitter user Jeannie Stewart (@vamputee) claims Disney made theater workers wait a month to see star wars movies, presumably when the sequel trilogy was released:

Yes and no. Throw passes usually have a restriction on them. Usually two weeks, but Disney has been known to last a month. (Star Wars usually)

This user, however, alleges that movie theater workers generally don’t have to wait a full month to see movies.

@RasberryRazz reported that their theater nearly got in trouble after an usher got a free ticket to Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War, without realizing the prohibition of free access to Disney films applied to this film. They tweeted:

And we almost got into big trouble when one of the ushers got a free ticket to Civil War because we didn’t know it was the free tickets to a Disney movie for a month at first. Disney apparently sent us a warning. They are petty…

It’s important to remember, however, that Disney has not confirmed the existence of this policy, and the alleged warning has not been publicly shared online.

According to Twitter users who were discussing the situation, the “ban” mainly applies to large movie theater chains. @RasberryRazz said he had no problem with Disney until its independent cinema was bought by the Cinemark chain:

Fairly recent to say the least. When the theater was independent, that wasn’t a problem, but the owners sold it to cinemark and that changed everything for the worse.

Another user, Rage (@Addilemonade), reported a similar experience with Disney movies:

We used to have after-hours employee screenings when I worked in a theater, but we could never do Disney — because God forbid 50 underpaid college kids see The Lion King for free.

Twitter user Lego Stobie Wars (@Stobuscus) was just one of many to agree. They wrote:

I don’t know what I’m legally allowed to say, but Disney was one of the companies that got mad if they heard that staff had free access to their movies from the start

Some users wondered how Disney could monitor who could see their movies for free, and whether it was logistically possible for them to crack down on any theater that offered its employees free tickets to Disney movies. @RasberryRazz explained that it’s easily monitored thanks to digital box office and assigned seats and ushers who confirmed no one snuck into the movies. Their tweet:

Assigned seats and ushers to check that employees haven’t sneaked in

Related: Sam Raimi Reveals He Cut A LOT From ‘Doctor Strange 2’

Managers would also keep tabs on ushers, making sure they don’t let any of their colleagues watch free Disney movies. Twitter user Erin (@whiiteness) wrote:

It’s not the colleagues, it’s the managers who look at us like prey

Again, please note that Disney has not commented on these allegations and offers no public information about banning theater employees from viewing their new releases early on. Inside the Magic will let you know if Disney provides commentary.

Do you think movie theater employees should be able to see new Disney releases for free? Let us know in the comments.


Comments are closed.