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Illinois court dismisses movie theater start time lawsuit

UPI News Service, 11/05/2005 

The Loews theater chain has promised to put a disclaimer in future ads letting viewers know the start time listed actually means the start of previews.

A Chicago-area woman sued Loews Cineplex Theaters two years ago after she saw "The Quiet American" at one of the chain's theaters. A state appellate court dismissed the suit Friday, ruling that Loews has solved the problem.

Miriam Fisch claimed that she was forced to sit through minutes of commercials. CEO Executive Travis Reid promised the chain will show only previews of coming attractions after the advertised start time.

Lawyer Mark Weinberg said Loews has only adopted a voluntary policy that it could drop at any time.

"These things go on for 20, 25 minutes, with theaters just getting out of control in exploiting a captive audience," Weinberg said. "In our fast-paced society, time is precious and when somebody steals 25 minutes of your time, there's something wrong with that -- though the courts don't seem interested in stopping it from happening."

An Illinois legislator responded to Loews pledge by dropping plans to introduce a bill demanding honesty on movie start times.

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Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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