US cinema chain to provide CaptiView captions

Wednesday, 27 April 2011 16:34pm

America’s third largest cinema chain, Cinemark, will install CaptiView closed caption equipment for Deaf and hearing impaired patrons in all its Californian complexes by mid-2012.

A result of legal action taken against Cinemark, the settlement applies only to California but advocates are meeting with Cinemark and other chains to encourage closed captioning services in other states.  

Cinemark was accused of violating the Americans With Disabilities Act and California's disability law by failing to provide captioning services to accommodate hearing impaired patrons. Kevin Kniestrick, the lawyer at Disability Rights Advocates in Berkeley who filed the lawsuit, said of the settlement, "It makes first-run movies available to millions of patrons."

Cinemark has already equipped 64 California theatres with CaptiView, the same system that is being installed in Australian chains via the Cinema Access Implementation Plan.

Laura Franze, representing Cinemark, commented, “Cinemark has long recognised the importance of making the movies it exhibits accessible to deaf and hard-of-hearing audiences and has supported captioning in different forms for many years. With the conversion to digital cinema and the development of digital closed captioning systems like CaptiView, Cinemark was moving ahead to full implementation of closed captioning even before this lawsuit was filed.”

Read more on the San Francisco Chronicle’s website and on Bill Graham’s blog.

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