With 50 3-D films due out within two years, studios and theaters are squabbling over who should pay for the requisite glasses. At $1 per moviegoer, 3-D glasses can tack on $10 million to production costs, the Chicago Tribune reports. Movie execs and theaters split a $2 to $3 ticket surcharge on those films, but neither wants to buy glasses with their share.
When Fox refused to foot the optics bill for Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, out July 1, one theater company threatened to show it in 2-D. The studio gave in, but points out that theaters can reuse the glasses, so they should provide them. Theaters retort that they already pay thousands in fees and per-ticket royalties for the equipment needed to show 3-D films.