I started working at the theatre when I was 17. I've worked for 2 companies. Been transferred across the country. I've made it through 2 of the 5 Twilight movies, Batman, Magic Mike, many a popcorn kettle burns, 3 general managers(some interesting stories there), countless assistant mangers and saw some crazy shit go down.

Proof: http://imgur.com/VR4E2xX

Edit: I'm gonna take a break and help my dad with a few things. Feel free to continue asking questions I'll be back in a few hours.

Comments: 296 • Responses: 54  • Date: 

BlackMambaJuice45 karma

Worked in a theater during high school too. I had just started my shift behind the concession stand around 3pm. Lobby was pretty empty. A guy in his 50s walks up to the counter with his 6 year old daughter in hand. He looks like a typical barfly, unshaven, disheveled and beer gut. His daughter kept saying 'Daddy, I want popcorn. Daddy, let's get candy." Sweet girl. He looks hung-over. Another guy in his 50s gets in line behind them. After getting the Dad his popcorn and candy, the Dad yells at me "Christ! $20 for this. Are you kidding me?!" The guy behind him points at the sign with the prices: "It said it right there. Are you fucking blind?". Dad retorts, "Don't curse in front of my kid, asshole!" (I specifically recall the 'asshole' part). Punches start flying. The little girl is crying 'Daddy!". The other staff are frozen while they stare at two grown men wrestle to the floor. I take a moment to consider other employment options. THEN, the Dad quickly pulls back his arm to throw a punch -- his elbow hits his daughter right on the side of the head. She goes down. Both men don't notice and throw a couple more punches. The daughter starts to get up and cries, "please don't hurt my daddy." The other guy stops. Dad quickly grabs his daughter and leaves into the theater with their popcorn. The other guy catches his breath and jokingly says, "ok then. I'll have a medium popcorn with extra butter". Without hesitation, I offer "would you like to upgrade to a large for 50 cents more?" …And this is the day I was almost killed

TL;DR: saw a Dad get into fight and hit his 6 year old daughter

MoviesRus12 karma

That reminds me of the time I walked into work and RIGHT as I walk in the doors these two 13 year old girls get into this crazy cat-fight in the middle of the lobby, one of the girls ends up running out of the building, the other girl gets knocked out and has a broken nose.

Jfreek3 karma

They didn't happen to be wearing "Team Edward"/" Team Jacob" shirts, did they?

MoviesRus2 karma

I don't think so, though that would be hilarious.

Transave21 karma

What movies stand out as attracting the weirdest group of people? Or where the weirdest things happened among the audience?

MoviesRus57 karma

Either Hobbit or Batman. All kinds of crazy costumes, some of the premieres we (employees) actually got to dress up.

Weirdest thing, hmmm...That's toughy...One that comes to mind is the time this kid fell asleep in the theatre and his friends came out and asked me if I would go in there and wake him and make it seem like he's been in there for a while. He freaked out pretty bad. It was hilarious.

sexyboygirlmanwoman20 karma

Stop charging so much for popcorn....um, question mark

MoviesRus22 karma

We have no say in the matter. Also, we are REQUIRED to upsell and suggestive sell to customers. So many people get mad at us for it but we really can get into A LOT of trouble if we don't.

slick80869 karma

It baflles me that customers don't understand this. Like anyone working in front of customers has any say in the matter. I go to the movies ALOT. I have moviepass so I see pretty much every movie in the theater. I usually buy popcorn and a soda too. I know it is overpriced, but I also know that concessions are how the theater makes any money. I always get asked if I want to, "make that a large for just $.50 more", and I always say, "No, thankyou." I know they have to ask, and I figure being polite to them while they do their job is really the only civilized thing to do.

They aren't paid well enough to answer "why" questions unless they've been given a script. Expecting otherwise is unreasonable.

MoviesRus7 karma

My theatre I work at now is all about sales, if we don't meet a certain quota for large sized drinks and popcorn we can get in trouble. If we don't get at least 100$ in donations on weekends and 50$ during the week we also get in trouble. So if we seem pushy it's because we're trying to save our asses.

BlackMambaJuice6 karma

So true. Every customer asks 'why is it so expensive?'

MoviesRus4 karma

Yup. And you have to treat EVERY question "as if it's the first time you've been asked it"

shakycam313 karma

Do you take any special measures to get people to shut up during movies? What should we do as those attending movies being ruined by loudmouths?

MoviesRus16 karma

We are required to do screen checks at least 2-3 times per movie to monitor any inappropriate behavior. We usually give them 1 warning if they don't comply we simply tell them they HAVE to leave. They can choose to take passes or a full refund. (on the back of your tickets it states thet we have the right to do this)

And your best bet if that's going on is to (calmly) ask them to be quiet, if it's really bothering you, flag one of us down, NEVER be afraid to ask an theatre employee for help, we're trained to be able to answer questions as well as troubleshoot and solve problems.

speculates11 karma

What's the worst thing you've had to clean up?

What's the craziest thing you've seen happen?

MoviesRus18 karma

I've had to clean up everything from soiled diapers to used condoms...but I'd have to say the worst was cum on the floor in one of the theatres.

The craziest thing was actually pretty recently, during the midnight premiere for The Hobbit, a extremely intoxicated fellow decided to barrel through the Hobbit hole in the standee and eventually had to be tackled and arrested by the police.

NinjaHighfive18 karma

How did you know it was cum? Did you taste it?

MoviesRus19 karma

It was pretty obvious...there was also women's panties not too far from it so I'm just assuming....

gangnam_style20 karma

You probably don't get paid enough to deal with that shit.

MoviesRus26 karma

Those were the words out of my mouth when I saw that...

mr_burnzz11 karma

Where did you find them? Just wondering where the best location is for..preventing..sex in..theatres..

MoviesRus12 karma

You usually find them in the back corners away from the theatre entrance. I've also found them in the back parking area (rarely used).

Iamatworkrightmeow6 karma

From teenage me: Sorry about the cum.

MoviesRus24 karma

Apology accepted...next time, I'm rubbing your nose in it...

Home_Nucleonics7 karma

Can you lay out one of your top general manager stories?

MoviesRus21 karma

When I started working at the theatre I had a GM who micro-managed everything, no one really liked him. He treated us like the scum of the earth. We had an employee who always seemed a little TOO fond of him. They ended up spending a little too much time with each other and people got suspicious. He started giving her special tasks and spending a lot more alone time in the back stock room. After weeks of denying a relationship the employee randomly quits the job (she had been working there for 4 years) after multiple calls to HR they finally show up and interrogate all of the employees and the general manager. Turns out he was having a sexual relationship with the girl (obvious). They had sex all over the theatre, Stock room, manager office, employee break room, ect... but here's the catch, the manager wasn't fired...instead, He was promoted... I wish that I could tell more but to keep the identity of the employee and the manager confidential, I can't...

Mechiegam3 karma

He gets promoted for on the job sex? This shit isn't TED

MoviesRus2 karma

That's how I felt. I was furious, but on the brightside he wasn't working at my theatre anymore.

sPOKoOne6 karma

How long have you worked there?

Since you consider yourself a movie theater veteran, where do you see yourself in years to come?

What do you hate about your job?

MoviesRus10 karma

I suppose working for theatres for nearly 2 years isn't quite a veteran but it sure feels like it's been a lot longer.

I hope to move up in the company to at least a manager until I get on my feet with college and such.

I hate that I basically have to expect to work weekends and holidays. The theatre is open 365(6) days a year. Though for Christmas, Thanksgiving and Easter I do receive time and a half.

kickedthehabit6 karma

Do you think the accessibility of movies (VHS, DVDS, Instant Downloads, etc) is at the core of what killed the formality of the movie-going process? Going to see a film used to be an event, where people would dress up and act appropriately, like seeing a play. Now it's more of a time-killer while your friends fuck around at the mall. What do you think caused this?

MoviesRus9 karma

I believe it's because it's so easily accessible nowadays. We're open 365 days a year from 10a-12a (later on midnight premieres). People take it for granted. It used to be, there was 1 show and 1 specified time per night. People also take what's going on behind the scenes (at the theatre) to make it all possible for them to be there and have the experience they (are supposed to) have for granted as well. Also people just think "Hey, I can fuck around in here because in a couple months I can buy it on DVD."

Edit: My Laptop accidently submitted the post before I was done.

HODOR005 karma

Ha I got a blow job in a regal theatre once. So.....sorry.

MoviesRus9 karma

No problem as long as I didn't have to clean up your mess. I've actually done my fair share of things in theatres.

DukeNemesis4 karma

How much earning of the total does Popcorn, Drinks etc. generate?

MoviesRus7 karma

I believe when my GM and I did the math one day we made roughly a 400% profit on all of the food and beverages. But we only receive roughly 9% of the ticket cost.

greeny744 karma

Used to work in a theater myself, so I am very familiar on how much working the popcorn kettle sucks. I got a nasty burn on my arm from where it touched the side of the kettle. I remember hearing my flesh burn before feeling it! My question: Have you ever gotten seriously hurt on the job?

MoviesRus6 karma

I've had severe burns and i've slipped a few times when the floor gets bad after a rush but never anything too serious.

Reddit_Wingman3 karma

Have you seen 5 shit filled diapers left on the ground after a show?

Have you ever seen a used tampon in a soda cup?

Did you ever stumble upon a used condom on the floor in a Hillary Duff movie?

I have. So have you really seen it all?

EDIT: just saw a comment you made about having to clean up diapers and condoms. Guess you have seen it all. Respect.

MoviesRus1 karma

I've cleaned up so many used tampons (being a female)

Tummers093 karma


MoviesRus2 karma

Employees were trained to look out for suspicious activity, Theatre checks were implemented...but other that that we didn't do too much.

Tummers092 karma


MoviesRus4 karma

No I never have and I really hope I never do.

alsenan3 karma

What was the funniest moment you encountered? surprised?

MoviesRus3 karma

Watching the man at The Hobbit opening barrel through a standee (more detailed story in earlier comments)

thombudsman3 karma

How often are people stopped for bringing in outside food? How are they usually caught?

MoviesRus3 karma

All the time. People think they're cleaver but we're taught to look for the signs. I mean I honestly could careless if they bring it in. I saw this kid the other day who came in wearing a hoodie and there was a painfully obvious bulge underneath it as well as in the pocket. I just looked at him and said, "You know that's pretty obvious, right?" He looked down all ashamed and said "I know" We've had people actually give us the food and ask us to hold it until the end of the movie...

mr_burnzz3 karma

What the hell was it? Bucket of Chicken? Cuz I've done that and it is as awesome as it sounds. Never forget the sriracha for it either.

MoviesRus2 karma

I have no clue but secretly I hope it was.

DigimonOtis3 karma

As a former AMC employee I feel like I'm supposed to hate you or something.

The worst part of my job was definitely selling the Stubs cards, the horrible horrible $12 a year loyalty cards. Ability to sell those determined promotions and job security. Is there any similar pressure to get loyalty sign ups at Regal?

MoviesRus1 karma

Not so much with loyalty as much as with Charity donations. That's a bitch.

Ghost132 karma

Take my word for it....get into a projection position, its so much better. No more having to deal with customers :)

MoviesRus4 karma

Theatres a digital now...we don't even have projectionists anymore and with Regal only managers are allowed in the booth

BadLuckBaskin1 karma

If it's digital now, how do they handle the actual medium? Are they DVDs sent by the production companies that are just set to automatic timers?

MoviesRus4 karma

They're on USBs we have to ingest them, the only way it will play is if we put in a key (similar to one of a video game) but the key can only be put in after a certain date and time. The projectors have a system to know what time exactly they have to start the previews and the movie.

crzystve422 karma

Are there any special perks you or your friends would take advantage of?

MoviesRus3 karma

Free movie tickets, popcorn, and drinks. (even to midnight premiers)

crzystve421 karma


MoviesRus5 karma

As long as the movie isn't selling out completely they will usually let you in. I've never had a problem with it people usually think it's really cool that you get in for free. Although the first thing people ask you is if you can get them in for free too.

Laser_Disc_Hot_Dish2 karma

How often do you catch a guy fapping in a film of possible un-fap worthy material? Only reason I ask is because some guy got caught fapping during the movie Savages at a shoot people up type of scene.

MoviesRus7 karma

I personally haven't (Thank FSM) but a few f my co workers have caught people in kids movies...Yeah the police were involved there...

You-are_wrong2 karma


MoviesRus1 karma

we usually only ask them to leave if they make a big deal other than that we ask the, to either throw it away or put it back in their car.

FishingisfortheWeak2 karma

Ok, I'll ask. Have you ever caught or witnessed and/or did nothing about seeing someone bootlegging a film? Don't answer if it was Gigli.

MoviesRus8 karma

Actually I haven't personally seen someone do it but I have been there when someone was caught. It's anti-climactic to say the least...

bobbybrown_2 karma

What do they actually do? I've kinda wondered this before.

MoviesRus3 karma

They have to keep the person at the theatre, we have to watch them delete the file and then the police are called and they're arrested...

ericsegal2 karma

How many times have you broken up sexual activities?

MoviesRus4 karma

I luckily have never had to break anything like that up, although my very first day working I walked into a theatre on my break and walked in on a blowjob, they immediately stopped once they realized I was in there.

Compley2 karma

What's the craziest thing you've found somebody sneaking into the theatre?

MoviesRus6 karma

Right after the shooting in Colorado, we caught someone with a gun.

FlipprDolphin2 karma

2 years? you have not seen anything.

Worked at movie theatres for around 10 years and 2 different locations (NJ and Miami). Went from regular employee to manager

Here are somethings i am sure you have not seen that I have:

1) Inside job theft on our vault

2) Rat infestation in concession and inside theaters

3) Stabbing (during pineapple express)

4) A manhunt for an escaped prisoner and we had to shut down our theatre

And I am sure a ton of other things.

MoviesRus2 karma

Actually, I have seen 1 and 2.

theworldgotme2 karma

How fast can you thread a projector? My personal best was about 90 seconds.

MoviesRus3 karma

I've never had to (digital projectors), which is a bummer...

LukeCa881 karma

My friend once took a dump on a seat in the movie theatre. The theatres solution? Just put a large plastic bag over the seat. I swear that bag was on the seat for a couple years. How often do the seats get steam cleaned?

MoviesRus1 karma

I honestly don't know I don't think I've ever seen them cleaned.

globox851 karma

Can I ask why people aren't allowed to bring in their own food where you work? Here (Sweden) nobody in the theater cares at all and hasn't said a word when I've brought food from home, right in front of the employees' eyes.

MoviesRus6 karma

Because we don't make much money from the ticket sales, our main source of profit is from the concession stand...if you bring in food that takes away from potential sales

wolverderp1 karma

Do you have any suggestions for someone who dreams of opening their own movie theater one day?

MoviesRus1 karma

I wouldn't even know where to start.

wolverderp1 karma

Would you even reccomend it? Lol. Do the higher-level managers seem happy?

MoviesRus2 karma

Theres a lot of money that goes into it...just one projector costs millions of dollars...but most of my managers love their jobs!

heater071 karma

What do you do on slow days where you dont have many people in and theres not much to do.

Ive been fired once it my life after 15 years in the workforce and it was from a movie theater all because I was hanging out in the box office when I was the doorman, and there was a whole 10 customers in the theater.

MoviesRus3 karma

My favorite thing to do it make sculptures out of paperclips. Being the doorperson SUCKS when it's dead...actually, it sucks in general.

westleysnipez1 karma

Has anyone ever made weird sounds like a cat or dog while the movie was playing?

MoviesRus2 karma

there's a regular at my old theatre that makes sex noises while eating his popcorn.

tunersharkbitten1 karma

Ok so I didnt mean for you to take offense to my last post. I started back in 03 right before thanksgiving. Worked my ass off for 2 years then got lead. Then another 2 and then I got manager. Left after a year because college was moee important than work and they scheduled me during finals.


MoviesRus1 karma

I understand. I haven't work there quite as long but I was working 40 hours a week every week with school and I took as many shifts I possibly could, I haven't taken a vacation since I started working there. I've seen a lot because I've been there for the majority of my life since I started working there. Props though...I would love to become a manager one day.

Donkeyslapper841 karma

What is the first movie you remember seeing in the theater as a kid?

MoviesRus6 karma

Pokemon 2000, I remember distinctly because I got a pokemon card just for going to see it.

Interwebzking1 karma

What's the greatest thing about working for a theater? Would you recommend getting a job with one?

MoviesRus2 karma

When little kids come in for their first movie is actually really sweet to see. But my favorite thing is free movies. I haven't paid for a movie in soooo long that I can't even imagine paying for one. I would recommend it but I wouldn't suggest it if you don't have people skills.

FiachB71 karma

who were the most annoying people to kick out if you have?

MoviesRus5 karma

Teenagers and bitchy moms.

pushiper1 karma

What's your favourite movie?

MoviesRus5 karma

I have too many, but the number one is probably SuckerPunch

zac--attack1 karma

What would you expect the average employee to do if he noticed I was sneaking booze into the theater? If I'm not making a scene, just having a drink with my flick, do they look the other way or bust me?

MoviesRus2 karma

Well it says no outside food or drink...we'd have to have a manager confiscate it. Other than that They'd probably just ask you to put if back in you vehicle if it wasn't open.

Kygren1 karma

How often do you have to have security/police escort belligerent moviegoers from the premises? Any good stories on that front?

MoviesRus1 karma

More often than you would think. I believe in an earlier comment I told a story about an intoxicated man running into a Standee.

Donkeyslapper840 karma

What's your favorite scary movie?

MoviesRus5 karma

Recent: Mama, it was surprisingly good. Old-school: Night of the Living Dead

Firelordbob0 karma

If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?

MoviesRus6 karma

I would have to say probably the ability to make stupid people disappear, and well for obvious reasons.