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December 31, 2008 > Entertaining Autism

Entertaining Autism

Autism Society of America and AMC Entertainment(r) to Host Sensory Friendly Films

Submitted By Carin Yavorcik

AMC Entertainment (AMC) and the Autism Society of America (ASA) have teamed up to bring families affected by autism and other disabilities a special opportunity to enjoy their favorite films in a safe and accepting environment on a monthly basis. "Sensory Friendly Films" premiered across the country in August 2008, and are continuing this January with a special showing of the new film "Marley and Me."

An estimated 30 million people in the world have an autism spectrum disorder, 1.5 million in America alone. Every day in America, 60 families learn their child has autism. These families face challenges of care, support, education, financial hardship and medical and health care issues that make autism a national public health issue, costing the U.S. economy $90 billion a year. Though there is no cure, autism is treatable and individuals with autism have tremendous potential.

Autism is a complex neuro-developmental disability that affects a person's ability to communicate and interact with others. It often comes with sensory challenges, such as hypersensitivity to light or sound, and children or adults affected by autism may not understand the social boundaries of movie theatre etiquette, such as not talking during the film or sitting still through most of the show.

In order to provide a more accepting and comfortable setting for this unique audience, the movie auditoriums will have their lights brought up and the sound turned down, families will be able to bring their own gluten-free, casein-free snacks, and no previews or advertisements will be shown before the movie. Additionally, audience members are welcome to get up and dance, walk, shout or sing - in other words, AMC's "Silence is Golden(r)" policy will not be enforced unless the safety of the audience is questioned. Tickets are only $6 at the AMC Cupertino Square 16 and the AMC Mercado 20, and can be purchased on the day of the event.

Sensory Friendly Films are a nationwide event. Markets include Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Baltimore; Chicago; Cleveland; Columbia, S.C.; Dallas; Denver; Indianapolis; Kansas City; Los Angeles, Miami; Minneapolis; New York; Norfolk, Va.; Oklahoma City; Omaha, Neb.; Phoenix; Pittsburgh; San Diego; San Francisco; San Jose; Seattle; Tucson, Ariz. and Washington, D.C. For a complete list of theatres, please visit www.autism-society.org/sensoryfilms.

For more information about ASA, visit www.autism-society.org or contact Carin Yavorcik at 301-657-0881 x 115 or cyavorcik@autism-society.org.

Marley and Me - Sensory Friendly Viewing
Saturday, January 3;
10 a.m.

AMC Cupertino Square 16
10123 N. Wolfe Rd., Cupertino

AMC Mercado 20
3111 Mission College Blvd., Santa Clara

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