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Theaters raising ticket prices: How much extra will you be willing to pay?

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Image Credit: DreamWorks AnimationIf you’re going to see How to Train Your Dragon this weekend, don’t be surprised if you’re paying a little extra. Wall Street analysts announced today that theaters across the country are hiking ticket prices, with 2-D screenings going up 4 percent, 3-D prices rising by 8 percent, and IMAX tickets rising by 10 percent. The average upcharge to see a 3-D movie is now $4. (Let’s all just blame the overwhelming success of 3-D smashes Avatar and Alice in Wonderland, yes?) It’s still early in the 3-D boom-let, but I can’t help wondering at what price audiences will start to rebel. Avatar and Alice set awfully high bars in terms of visual inventiveness. At some point, audiences won’t be willing to pay extra anymore for just the simple fact of an added dimension. They’re going to require something more in terms of quality, and if they don’t get it, then that $17.50 (the price of a 3-D ticket here in New York) is going to feel awfully steep. How much would be too much for you to pay, even if it’s a movie you’d like to see? And how long will 3-D tickets really be worth the extra money to you?