You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Fathom Events to Launch ‘Nutcracker’ Performances for Autistic Customers

Fathom Events is partnering with the Autism Society of America to bring alternative content to autistic customers, starting with the Bolshoi Ballet’s performance of “The Nutcracker” on Dec. 19, Variety has learned exclusively.

The one-night, sensory-friendly event — which mirrors AMC’s nine-year-old program — provides for the lights to be raised and the audio lowered. Audiences will not be expected to stay quiet or in their seats, so those on the spectrum and their families can feel comfortable in the movie theater, allowing patrons to dance along with the ballerinas on screen, shout, sing, move around the room and express themselves however they like.

Fathom, which specializes in presenting live events for theatrical chains on weeknights, is co-owned by AMC Entertainment, Cinemark Holdings, and Regal Entertainment Group. Fathom CEO John Rubey and the Autism Society’s Matthew Asner told Variety that the companies began working on their collaboration last year and plan to offer several similar live-performance events in 2017.

The Nutcracker” will be captured live from the Bolshoi stage in Moscow and shown in 26 U.S. locations. The content is provided by BY Experience and Pathé Live.

“Our hope is that families and children with all kinds of special needs can now go to the movie theater and feel comfortable being themselves,” Fathom Events VP of Programming Kymberli Frueh said. “We want to share the world of event cinema with everyone, and sensory-friendly screenings are another way we can provide access to a variety of audiences.”

Fathom screened the animated “Batman: The Killing Joke,” which grossed $3.8 million, on the last Monday and Tuesday of July. Other notable Fathom titles include “The Sound of Music 50th Anniversary,” “Finding Noah: An Adventure of Faith,” “Ed Sheeran: Jumpers for Goalposts,” and the anti-global warming documentary “Climate Hustle” with Sarah Palin participating in the post-screening discussion.

“We are delighted to be able to partner with Fathom Events to bring the production of ‘The Nutcracker’ shown in sensory responsive theaters to families and individuals impacted by autism this holiday season,” said Scott Badesch, president, Autism Society of America.

More Film

  • FX's 'Snowfall' Panel TCA Winter Press

    John Singleton Hospitalized After Suffering Stroke

    UPDATED with statements from John Singleton’s family and FX Networks John Singleton, the Oscar nominated director and writer of “Boyz N’ the Hood,” has suffered a stroke. Sources confirm to Variety that Singleton checked himself into the hospital earlier this week after experiencing pain in his leg. The stroke has been characterized by doctors as [...]

  • 'Curse of La Llorona' Leads Slow

    'Curse of La Llorona' Leads Slow Easter Weekend at the Box Office

    New Line’s horror pic “The Curse of La Llorona” will summon a solid $25 million debut at the domestic box office, leading a quiet Easter weekend before Marvel’s “Avengers: Endgame” hits theaters on April 26. The James Wan-produced “La Llorona,” playing in 3,372 theaters, was a hit with hispanic audiences, who accounted for nearly 50% [...]

  • Jim Jarmusch in 'Carmine Street Guitars'

    Film Review: 'Carmine Street Guitars'

    “Carmine Street Guitars” is a one-of-a-kind documentary that exudes a gentle, homespun magic. It’s a no-fuss, 80-minute-long portrait of Rick Kelly, who builds and sells custom guitars out of a modest storefront on Carmine Street in New York’s Greenwich Village, and the film touches on obsessions that have been popping up, like fragrant weeds, in [...]

  • Missing Link Laika Studios

    ‘Missing Link’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV ad measurement and attribution company iSpot.tv, Annapurna Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Missing Link.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.91 million through Sunday for [...]

  • Little Woods

    Film Review: 'Little Woods'

    So much of the recent political debate has focused on the United States’ southern border, and on the threat of illegal drugs and criminals filtering up through Mexico. But what of the north, where Americans traffic opiates and prescription pills from Canada across a border that runs nearly three times as long? “Little Woods” opens [...]

  • Beyonce's Netflix Deal Worth a Whopping

    Beyonce's Netflix Deal Worth a Whopping $60 Million (EXCLUSIVE)

    Netflix has become a destination for television visionaries like Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy, with deals worth $100 million and $250 million, respectively, and top comedians like Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle ($40 million and $60 million, respectively). The streaming giant, which just announced it’s added nearly 10 million subscribers in Q1, is honing in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content