Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Finally Able To Enjoy a Movie
I’ve written several times in the past about captioned movies, or the lack thereof, in our area. Our movie theatre landscape is controlled primarily by Regal Theatres, and not until about a year and a half ago did any of the theatres show a movie captioned for the Deaf. And that particular theatre was not very close to our home.
We’ve missed first run movies that the kids would really liked to have seen had there been captions. We even tried using an iPad to provide the captions, but with little luck for the newest of movies. We even, with the help of our state’s Disability Protection and Advocacy organization, cajoled Regal theatres to show the newest Harry Potter movie captioned the first weekend it opened. But that was the only time they did anything like that. But things do actually seem to be improving.
Some (a few) of the Regal Theatres in our city are showing first run movies and providing captioning through a device that looks like a pair of glasses. According to a website that discusses the partnership between Sony and Regal:
“Sony is working with American theater chain Regal Entertainment to introduce a new kind of glasses technology that can display closed captions for those with hearing problems. The new Access Glasses can show text in six different languages, which is then placed directly in the viewer's field of vision so that they don't have to constantly look at the bottom of the screen. The information is streamed wirelessly, and the location of the text can be adjusted to make things more comfortable. The glasses also include features for the blind or visually impaired, as they can be used alongside headphones to provide extra audio detail about just what's happening on screen.
Regal — the largest theater chain in the US — started rolling the Access Glasses out this month, and expects to have them available in "practically all of its fully digitized theater locations" by early 2013.”
Chip and Ronnie went to see the movie Prometheus this past weekend and used the glasses. They worked very well, but currently don’t work with 3D movies. This is definitely a huge step forward for Regal, and a very welcome technology that will allow my family and many others to enjoy movies every bit as much as the Hearing community!