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>I would have expected considerable exhibitor resistance to the >increasing number of three-hour epics, but that does not seem to >have been the case.

There actually has been resistence from theatres to long film lengths as has been reported for several years in trades like Variety and even some mainstream publications like Salon.  This hasn't been very aggressive or organized because exhibitors are pretty limited in what they can do about it and also they'd really rather have a three hour plus Titanic over an 84-minute Bubble Boy.

As for raising prices on lengthy films, my guess is that exhibitors haven't because of (a) logistical problems (reprogramming registers & training staffs), (b) lower attendance however slight that might be, (c) it would contribute to general customer perception of movies as expensive, and (d) possible backlash from studios.

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