Tuesday, June 25, 2013

A BIG "Thank YOU" To Marianne Ross, AMC Theatres and #Autism Society For Implementing Sensory Friendly Films!

Not many people know how the very first "Sensory Friendly Films" came into existence. It was after Marianne Ross, a mother of a seven year old daughter with autism, was asked to leave a movie theater because other movie-goers were bothered by her daughter's outbursts. The frustrated mother called an AMC movie theater in Columbia, Maryland and spoke to the theater's manager who took the time to listen to her about the adaptations the company could make to help children with autism, and their families, be more comfortable or accepted while watching movies. 

It has been just a little over four years since AMC Theatres and the Autism Society have teamed up to bring families affected by autism, and other disabilities, a special opportunity to enjoy their favorite films in a safe and accepting environment on a monthly basis with the "Sensory Friendly Films" program. In order for AMC Theatres to provide a more comfortable setting for this unique audience, the movie auditoriums will have their lights brought up and the sound turned down, families will be able to bring in their own gluten-free, casein-free snacks, and at most locations, no previews or advertisements will be shown before the movie. Additionally, audience members are welcome to get up and dance, walk, shout or sing - in other words, AMC's "Silence is Golden" policy will not be enforced unless the safety of the audience is questioned.

This coming Saturday morning, June 29th at 10:00 am, the scheduled "Sensory Friendly Film" is Monsters University, a computer animated comedy film produced by the renown Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures. If it is anything like Disney Pixar's Monster's Inc. that came out in 2001, it will be a good movie for us to take our families to see. I would like to ask you to enjoy the movie and then be sure to thank the staff that make it possible for our families to do so without being asked to leave, or at least ridiculed by other movie-goers. This will let them know how much we appreciate the time and effort that goes in to providing these films to the autism community!

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