The National Association of Theater Owners has released voluntary guidelines calling for movie trailers
to be no longer than two minutes – 30 seconds shorter than is the norm. This is sure to cause a debate in Hollywood–where moviegoers and industry folk make a point of getting to theaters early to watch the trailers. Trailers are an important part of the movie-going experience (not to mention give us a bit of leeway if stuck in traffic or parking is a mess). Anyone else not looking forward to this?
Studios aren’t happy either. Despite ubiquitous internet trailers, TV ads and theater trailers are still the most effective movie marketing. Even though the guidelines are voluntary, studios worry that theater owners will point to the new guidelines to refuse to play trailers that are over 2 minutes. So even though some theaters may choose not to follow the guidelines, studios may just play it safe and cut trailers down to 2 minutes.
The guidelines apply to titles opening on or after October 1st, and also specify that a trailer cannot be shown for a movie more than five months before its release.