LOS ANGELES—Through the recent years, movie theaters have been trying to cater more to their Deaf consumers. First, the theaters came out with boxes that sat in the cup holders and played the captions, but those were too cumbersome.
Consumers struggled to watch the movie while they were forever looking down at the little box. Then, came closed captioning glasses, which were bulky and rarely played the captions in time with the movie. Not only that, since the glasses were akin to a 3D movie. They often gave viewers a headache and left the movie blurry in the background. Many theaters fail to offer any of these accommodations, but Deaf moviegoers have no fear!
The National Association of Theater Owners has just recommended that a new rule be passed, making captioning an addition to the movies and trailers before they even reach the theater. This means no more glasses, no more headaches, and no more divided attention between the screen and the captioning device.
This is happening in 32,000 out of approximately 40,000 theaters in the United States and is expected to reach 48 million Deaf and hard of hearing people, who would not normally frequent the theater. Bring on the popcorn!