Cinema sued over costly snacks

Beth Squires

Fed up with paying ridiculous prices for snacks at the cinema? Well, so is one man from Detroit - and he’s taken his frustration a step further by suing his local movie theatre.

Cinema staff stopped Joshua Thompson from taking his own drink and snack into his local AMC cinema, so he’s filed a class action lawsuit against them.

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Thompson, a security technician in his twenties, said via the legal docs that he paid £5 for a drink and a packet of chocolate-covered peanuts at his cinema, which was almost three times the amount in a local store.

His lawyer told the Detroit Free Press: "He got tired of being taken advantage of. It's hard to justify prices that are three and four times higher than anywhere else."

Thompson is hoping the case will force all cinema chains to lower the prices of snacks, but legal experts doubt he can win the case.

The Hollywood Reporter quotes a study claiming that for every £19 of raw popcorn American cinemas use, they make a massive £1895 back.

Film fans across the pond will have experienced similar price hikes. In 2011 the BBC worked out that Cineworld made £3.69 profit per bag of popcorn – a 1200 per cent markup.

According to a 2009 study by Stanford boffins; “by charging high prices on concessions, exhibition houses are able to keep ticket prices lower”, therefore making the cinemas more accessible to a wider range of people.

Do you think this justifies more than two quid for a bag of Minstrels? Let us know in the comments below...