Trailers before the movie: How many is too many?

Movie-trailer-ratingFor years now, I’ve counted on trailers to give me ten minutes of wiggle room after the official start time of a movie — just enough to make a run for the concession stand or the bathroom before the main attraction. But it looks like I don’t need to rush anymore. According to The Hollywood Reporter, studios are paying distributors to bulk up the pre-show program with even more trailers, sometimes packing in as many as seven before a movie. Luckily, the MPAA sets a 2.5-minute time limit for the clips, but that still means you could get stuck with almost 18 minutes of promos before the opening credits of the movie you actually came to see begin to roll.

Personally, I think four trailers is my limit. After that, I just start fidgeting and making exaggerated fed-up noises like an old lady in an ATM line. But what about you, PopWatchers? How many previews is too many?



Comments (61 total) Add your comment
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  • Lisa Simpson

    Three is enough.

    • Ryan

      I agree with 3 too. Only if they are good though. None if it’s with terrible trailers.

      • Zeddicus zu’l zorander

        3 is the perfect number, it allows your eyes to adjust to the screen and if they are entertaining – all the better. I love the audience reaction to stupid movies’ trailers such as GI Joe when there was a unanimous groan

      • Zeddicus zu’l zorander

        Ads for shows are the worst though – I rolled my eyes for the ad for TNT’s incredibly stupid show Hawthorne – a nurse with attitude!

    • Celia

      Three sounds good. I chose zero in the poll, because I didn’t agree with the other two choices.
      But a teaser trailer (#1), a theatrical trailer (#2), and an international trailer (#3) are just the right amount.

      • Celia

        Okay. I completely missed the point of this article. That will teach me to comment before reading the article.
        But I love trailers, but too many can get annoying. After awhile I just want to see the freakin’ movie. So about 3 is good enough.

    • Ceballos

      YES. Three is the number. I also liked the suggestion a few weeks ago that every TV show should be six seasons.

      I feel like these should be enacted into law somehow. What other issues can we resolve here at Popwatch?

  • firstiepoo

    SECOND!!

    • Catie

      Agreed; I freaking love trailers. I would actually pay to sit and watch only trailers for two hours.

      Commercials: No.

    • MaryA

      Me too. I LOVE trailers. For me, its half the fun of going to see a movie. However, having to watch those commercials that I probably have seen a thousand times already on TV is torture.

  • firstiepoo

    AND THIRD!!!

    Guess nobody really cares about this post.

  • ash.

    only “18 minutes of promos” that’s it! I love movie trailers! I intentionally get to the movie theater early to make sure I don’t miss any of the movie trailers.

  • brody

    Dude, I LOVE trailers. If they want to pack like ten of ‘em on to the front of a movie, it’s totally fine by me.

    • Megg

      Me too! I swear, the trailers are almost my favorite part of going to the movies. I love seeing what looks good (and what looks bad) on the wide screen. There’s no much more exciting than seeing the first trailer for that one movie you’ve been waiting for.

  • Becs

    i agree with the first comment, 3 is about my max. After 3 and the movie starts, I am always, that was it? You know it’s a good length when you say that:-)

  • Emmit West

    I love trailers. I can easily sit through 20 mins.

    • Stacy

      Me too… but trailers, for movies. Not ads for movie tickets and Coke products. They get on my nerves.

      • LOL

        Good point.

      • Mojo Mom

        Totally agree–there shouldn’t be ANY commercials after the pre-movie slide show ends and the lights go down.

      • ks

        Totally agree-we can get comercials on the TV…

  • Drew

    I love it when movies have almost 18 min of trailers! Part of the experience. Though, 8 or so is probably the max I could do in one sitting.

  • Nerwen Aldarion

    I do like watching trailers, it is how I find out which movies I need to keep my eye on.

    Of course when those trailers don’t interest me then I get bored so it is really hit or miss.

    I will say that I do think 8 trailers is a little extreme, I’d prefer 4 or 5. 20 minutes of trailers is waaay too much, that is about a fifth of the movie right there!

    • llevinso

      I agree. I love movie trailers and usually go early to make sure I don’t miss them but 8 is a little extreme. I say 4-5 tops. But movie trailers are great.

  • Mary

    Three or four is my limit. By the fifth one, I’m like “Come on already!” And I HATE the previews before the previews! I miss the old days when I could talk to my friends before the trailers/movie started.

  • Jez

    Just think yourselves lucky that you only get trailers… in Australia we have to sit through actual ads before the movie, I would love to have the problem of too many trailers!

    • Steven

      Actually, they have been showing ads in addition to trailers before the movies. I don’t mind the trailers but the ads are annoying.

      • Celia

        The ads are really annoying. I hate them. The most popular ones tend to be from At&t, verizon, and coca cola.

    • Lisa Simpson

      We have ads, too. And really, trailers are commercials.

  • Lisa

    3 is perfect! :)

  • Joe

    The trailers make money because they sell time in between the trailers to advertisers. So don’t expect them go away… ever!

  • sharoneb

    I’d prefer 3-4 at the max. I do like seeing them, as it gives me a good idea of what I want to see in the future, but the amount of commercials and trailers that are shown these days is ridiculous. With everything included once the lights go down, it’s sometimes close to 25 minutes before the movie even starts, and that is just way too long.

  • April

    I definitely agree that there are just too many trailers. When my husband and I took our daughter to see How to Train your Dragon, there were almost 30 minutes of trailers/previews. I kid you not! By the time the movie started, we were almost out of popcorn, lol :)

    • Lisa Simpson

      My rule is to never open the box of Sno-Caps until the real movie is about to start.

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