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Deaf Patrons Complain Movie Theater Won't Turn On Captions

Dave Hollis, executive vice president of theatrical exhibition sales and distribution for Walt Disney Studios, speaks about the box office performance of their film Photo: Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
Dave Hollis, executive vice president of theatrical exhibition sales and distribution for Walt Disney Studios, speaks about the box office performance of their film "Beauty and the Beast" during their presentation at CinemaCon 2017 at Caesars Palace.

April 09, 2017 10:27 PM

Some deaf and hearing-impaired moviegoers say a Rhode Island theater refused to switch on the captioning so they could follow along with Disney's "Beauty and the Beast."

The Providence Journal reports 18 hearing-impaired people tried to see the film at the Showcase Cinemas at Warwick Mall on Saturday.

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Organizer Tim Riker says the group arrived unannounced and requested theater employees activate the captioning. But a manager refused, suggesting it wouldn't be fair to other patrons who had not paid to see a subtitled movie.

The group left without seeing the film.

Riker says the group wants state lawmakers to approve pending legislation requiring certain theaters to accommodate hearing- and sight-impaired customers.

The Warwick theater is owned by Massachusetts-based National Amusements, which hasn't commented.

The popular "Beauty and the Beast" has earned $432 million domestically in a month.

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Associated Press

(Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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