It’s day one of Showest: the theater industry’s annual convention where the movie studios trot out their wares for the theater owners. This year, all is coming up roses with business up 10 percent over last year’s numbers thanks in large part to the success of 3-D. In fact, of the 31 films in 2009 that crossed the $100 million mark, seven of them featured an extra dimension. As such, John Fithian, president of the National Association of Theater Owners, was happy to report that the major financing for the roll-out of 3-D is complete. Plus, this bottleneck that’s expected over the next few months with too much 3-D product and not enough screens should ease up as the theaters roll out an additional 2,500 screens by the end of the year.
One of those 3-D movies will be Pixar’s Toy Story 3, the long-awaited sequel to 1999’s Toy Story 2. The studio graced exhibitors with an unfinished cut of the film, and — though I’m sure it comes as no surprise to any of you — the film is great. Not only do the latest adventures of Buzz Lightyear and Cowboy Woody maintain the high quality that we’re used to seeing with Pixar movies, but this one is also exceptionally emotional. I was surrounded by a group of adults and there were many tears shed throughout the film. Why you ask? We’ve been asked to not give away the plot, but suffice it to say Andy’s all grown-up and about to go off to college, a moment-in-time that can turn a parent with a child of any age into a blubbery mess. But don’t take it from me. The movie bows June 18. This might be one you sneak off to see with your spouse after you’ve watched it once with the kids.