A conversation at the movie theater with Vice President of Regal Loyalty
Since it’s been around since 1989, it’s pretty likely you’ve been to a movie or two at a Regal theater.
Maybe even bought a large popcorn. It’s a theater you can trust for the quality of experience and that good extra surround sound, you know the one that shakes you a little. We thought it best for The Movie Issue to chat with someone who knows the Regal brand better than a concession stand knows refill requests. So we grabbed a large soda and silenced our phones to talk a little bit with Kelly Hawkins, Vice President of Loyalty for Regal Cinemas.
EXT. DAY – REGAL THEATER, NYC
Two people waiting in line to see a movie.
Kelly Hawkins, and a Whalebone team member reminding themselves not to talk during the movie.
WHALEBONE: What is your first memory of going to the movies?
KELLY HAWKINS: I’ll never forget my first time seeing a movie on the big screen. It was a rerelease of Jaws in the 1980s, and it completely blew my mind! Having only seen sharks in books, I couldn’t get over the overwhelming spectacle of rows of jagged teeth and thrashing fins. Let’s just say that I was a bit more cautious on that year’s beach trip.
WHALEBONE: If you had to explain your job to a 7-year-old how would you explain it?
KELLY: Let’s say you love basketball more than anything else in the world. Now imagine getting to play basketball every day. You know you’re going to win some and lose some, but ultimately you learn that it’s all about teamwork and working towards a common goal. There is no better high than celebrating your wins together as a team.
WHALEBONE: Is there a record for how many times someone has used Regal Unlimited in one day, or the most movies seen in a cycle?
KELLY: Due to our showtimes, the most movies an Unlimited subscriber can see in a single day is six or seven, which happens more often than you think. We have one member of our free Regal Crown Club loyalty program who’s already seen 620+ movies at our theaters since we opened in April, including multiple viewings of many of this year’s big releases.
INT. CONCESSION LINE
Kelly Hawkins and Whalebone browse choices of candies, sodas and corns.
WHALEBONE: One choice for the rest of your life, popcorn or a large Pepsi?
KELLY: This is a tough question, but there is nothing better than crunching into a mouthful of fresh, buttery goodness. Have you ever mixed your popcorn with your favorite candy? It’s called popcorn salad, and it’s out of this world!
WHALEBONE: Best seat in a movie theatre?
KELLY: Everyone has their favorite. Mine is right at the top of the theatre in the center of the row. Or you could say the best seat is at one of our newest premium formats like ScreenX or 4DX. There your seat transports you to an immersive experience where you’re surrounded by a 270-degree panoramic view or synchronized motion effects to the action on the screen.
INT. Kelly and Whalebone finish selecting the seats and the pre-preview trivia cards begin to display on the screen.
WHALEBONE: What’s something inherent in the Regal company structure that makes them such a trusted brand for moviegoers?
KELLY: We go out of our way to create personalized and intentional experiences for our customers, whether it’s providing excellent customer service or extending exclusive promotional offers to reward them for their loyalty to Regal.
WHALEBONE: From your perspective, what is something that has changed for the better for the world as people transition back into in-theater experiences?
KELLY: The shutdowns and disruptions of the past year or more revealed just how much our audience missed the big screen experience. Sure, while in lockdown, we all made do with the entertainment choices we had. But now that action-packed spectacles and brand-new family classics are making their way to the theaters, it’s clear that the audience is thrilled to come back. And the box office figures really demonstrate that enthusiasm.
INT. Movie begins to play and the central conflict is presented.
Tension rises around Kelly and Whalebone.
WHALEBONE: Aliens have finally landed on earth. You have been nominated to sit on the council of earthlings who will explain our codes and rituals. You have been asked to pick three movies to show the aliens about humans and who we are. What three movies do you pick?
KELLY: It’s a Wonderful Life. This movie shares the story of bringing out the best in others, sticking together with family and it’s also one of my favorite Christmas movies.
Rocky. Rocky is a story of grit, determination and overcoming odds to show that effort mixed with hard work pays off. Plus, you finish what you started.
Forrest Gump. Displays several decades in time while showcasing both the best and worst in humanity. It also has an amazing soundtrack with some of the greatest artists in music history.
EXT. NIGHT – THEATER PARKING LOT
Credits have rolled.
Kelly and Whalebone move into the theater parking lot, slightly disoriented from the shift in lighting.
WHALEBONE: What is the one thing that seeing a movie at home can’t do that experiencing it in a theater can?
KELLY: The magic of the in-theater experience just can’t be replicated. There’s nothing like sitting in a darkened theater, sharing the highs and lows of the action on the biggest of screens with a roomful of your fellow moviegoers. And the sound! The way it surrounds you and shakes you to your bones makes you feel like you’re IN the movie.