Photo from Screenwriterchic
While Aftershock, the movie about the Tangshan Earthquake of 1976, has been excessively popular, it’s also been excessively pumped full of advertising – including 20 minutes of adverts before the movie even started. One woman was so mad, she sued.
Chen Xiaomei, a lawyer in Shaanxi Province, filed the lawsuit arguing that audiences were given no warning or indication on the ticket that ads before the film would run on for 20 minutes. That’s like almost an entire sitcom episode… of ads. Not only did this waste movie goers’ time, it also “violated their right to know and to choose.”
From the amount Chen Xiaomei is demanding, it seems more like a warning to movies rather than any attempt to get rich off of a frivolous lawsuit: She’s demanding that Polybona (the theater) and Huayi Brothers Media Corp. (the film’s distributor) refund her ticket price of 35RMB, pay another 35RMB in compensation and an extra 1RMB for emotional damages.
She also wants the cinema to state clearly how long advertisements will run for, Huayi Bro.s to shorten commercial time to less than five minutes, and a written apology for wasting 20 minutes of her life.
As silly as the lawsuit sounds, I can’t fault her for bringing it. One of the worst parts about going to movies in the United States is having to sit through the ads that air before even the trailers – and those ones are much more entertaining and well crafted than the commercials here in China.