EARLY WORD: I Am Iron Man Redux



 In theaters May 7th

TIME: A great restaurant just opened — or maybe it’s a club, or a Broadway show — and everyone’s raving about it, but nobody can get in. Movies, though, are the people’s entertainment; Hollywood exists to give its vast audience instant gratification, to have enough screens for all the masses to attend the big new movie on its opening weekend, and in its optimum format. You want to see the new hit film? No problem. Theater exhibitors will increase the number of screens showing it. Buy a ticket and walk on in. Not now. At least, not when the movie’s in 3-D. Only about 4,000 of the 39,000 screens in North American theaters are currently equipped to show movie in the suddenly megafashionable format; and though theater chains are scrambling to convert more screens, they and the studios still feel the shortage. This weekend, there’ll be an unprecedented 3-D-theater traffic jam, as Clash of the Titans joins last week’s box-office champ How to Train Your Dragon and the Disney blockbuster Alice in Wonderland. That could make this the first weekend in movie history when the top three pictures at the domestic box office are shown in 3-D — except there aren’t enough venues to satisfy the needs of the three movies for suitable screens. MORE

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