Complaining about movie trailers is no longer solely the province of our ornery mayors or lonely people who still answer their phones even when the number comes up as “Blocked.” Now it’s also become a pet cause of the National Association of Theater Owners, as The Hollywood Reporter writes that the most powerful NATO in the world has begun considering adopting new rules that would limit movie trailers to no longer than two minutes. The talks arose because theaters are exhausted with enduring “the brunt of complaints from the public” who believe trailers are too long and don’t have better things to do than hang around in the lobby, speaking their mind about it to some guy who got a high-school job scooping popcorn, and who now puts on his vest every morning wondering whether he should have taken a chance sometime, somewhere.
Unfortunately, adopting these new rules would excise the now-standard extra 30 seconds that contain all of the advertised film’s plot, so you don’t actually have to see that movie where Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson are too old to intern at Google, and you can fall blissfully asleep at night knowing everything works out for them. And the studios, concerned for your health, are naturally proving resistant to the idea. “My trailers are 2.5 minutes because that's what we need to send the right message,” one anonymous studio executive who believes trailers send “messages” told THR.
And even though the rules would remain voluntary, studios fear that theaters would use them as an excuse not to run their long-ass trailer, or use the cumulative time saved to cram in even more trailers, collecting additional payments for each one. Then one day the studios wake up, and all the movie theaters have taken their money and run off to Mexico—and now where are people supposed to see trailers? The Internet? You can’t send a message on the Internet.