Webster’s Dictionary defines Autism as: a mental condition, present from early childhood, characterized by great difficulty in communicating and forming relationships with other people and in using language and abstract concepts. Autistic disorder (autism or classical ASD) is the most common condition in a group of developmental disorders known as the autism spectrum disorders, characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior. There is an estimated 1.5 million American children living with Autism. Children with autism are often left out of the movie experience as a consequence of a widespread belief that they are too sensitive to the atmosphere. While it is true that autistic children can be difficult to manage in a dark arena with loud noises and that strange and annoying sound of whispers and popcorn munching, AMC theaters in partnership with the Autism Society have come up with a solution.
AMC Theaters is offering Autism affected families a chance to see a movie together. Some, even for the very first time. It’s called the Sensory Friendly Films Program and is especially provided to Families Affected by Autism on a Monthly Basis nationwide. The idea began in Columbia, MD when the parent of an autistic child requested a special screening. The event was a success with over three hundred participants!
This nationwide program provides an opportunity for families with Autistic children a monthly movie screening with specially dedicated auditoriums that have an emphasis on safety and accessibility. The auditoriums dedicated to the program are well light and the audio is adjusted to a manageable level. Autistic audience members and their family are invited to move around the theater freely, dance, shout, or sing!
Of course each individual theater will have a different experience. So make sure to check below and contact your particular theater for prices and additional information. Today, there was a showing of Monsters, Inc 2D, and all though I've seen this movie dozens of times, this was the best. The fact that these families are enjoying a movie together was great. Both Autistic children and adults were mesmerized by the experience. Families were laughing and enjoying this theater experience with no worries. There was no shushing or usher to ask you to sit down. It was a really awesome experience! I would recommend this to any family that wants to offer there Autistic loved one a chance to have some positively stimulating fun.
*Upcoming Sensory Friendly Screenings
All shows are usually at 10:00 am local time. Dates and films are subject to change.
March 30, 2013 - THE CROODS 2-D
April 13, 2013 - JURASSIC PARK 2-D
June 1, 2013 - EPIC 2-D
June 29, 2013 - MONSTERS UNIVERSITY
July 13, 2013 - DESPICABLE ME 2
August 10, 2013 - THE SMURFS 2
September 21, 2013 - THE LITTLE MERMAID
October 5, 2013 - CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS 2
November 9, 2013 - MR. PEABODY AND SHERMAN
November 27, 2013 - FROZEN 2-D
December 21, 2013 - WALKING WITH DINOSAURS 2-D
*Participating Theaters In Order of Major City
AMC Discover Mills 18
AMC Indianapolis 17
AMC The Block 30
NEW YORK/NEW JERSEY
SALT LAKE CITY
AMC St. Charles Town Center 9
WEST PALM BEACH