Ah, the age-old dilemma, what do you do to entertain stir-crazy kiddos when it’s too cold or rainy to go outside? A family trip to the movies, of course!
But getting you kids to sit still in front of the TV at home is hard enough (we know, we know—parents are supposed to limit kids’ screen time, but sometimes tired moms and dads just need a break!), so how can you get your kids to sit still in the theater? 90+ minutes is a long time, after all.
Parents, you’re in luck, because movie theaters with jungle gyms are here to make it easier for your kids to get in their movie-viewing and their play time at the same time.
The concept for this type of theater came from Mexico. The theater Cinépolis first offered the playground option and now that company is bringing two locations, known as Cinépolis Junior, to Southern California, with additional locations on their way in Dallas; Dayton, Ohio; and Orange County, Florida.
Is this a win-win or what? Movie-makers need families watching their movies. And if not wanting to force your child to sit still for an entire movie will keep you away from the box office—well, that’s exactly the opposite of what Hollywood wants to happen.
“The kid-friendly push reflects the increasing importance of the family audience as Hollywood studios spend heavily on animated productions,” reports the L.A. Times, noting that movies such as “Finding Dory” and “Zootopia” each collected more than $1 billion in ticket sales.
“It’s really intended to make kids feel welcome and comfortable,” Cinépolis USA Chief Executive Adrian Mijares Elizondo told the L.A. Times. “The whole idea is to make it easier for parents to take their kids to the movies and let the kids have more fun.”
It will reportedly cost $3 more than a regular ticket to attend this screening, but if you and the kids are interested in giving this a go, get ready to half-watch “Beauty and the Beast” and half-keep an eye on your kid playing in the theater!