Posted May 4, 2023

Sensory Friendly Screenings: Providing Inclusive Movie Experiences

Update: Monthly sensory friendly screenings begin in January 2024. 

Movies are a great way to escape reality and immerse yourself in a different world. For many, going to the cinema is an enjoyable and exciting experience. But for some, it can be an overwhelming and distressing ordeal due to sensory sensitivities. That’s where sensory friendly screenings come in.

Earlier this summer we piloted sensory friendly screenings that cater to the needs of individuals who may find traditional moviegoing overwhelming. These screenings provided a safe and welcoming environment where folks can enjoy movies without feeling anxious or overstimulated.

As part of the recent JBFC Kids series expansion, we will offer sensory-friendly screenings on the first Sunday of every month starting January 2024. Upcoming screenings include: Frozen Sing-Along and Soul on February 4.

So, what exactly is a sensory friendly screening? A sensory friendly screening takes into account the sensory needs of certain individuals, including those on the autism spectrum. The lights are turned up, the sound is turned down, and there are no trailers or advertisements before the movie starts. The audience is encouraged to move around, talk, or make noise as needed, creating an accepting and accommodating environment where everyone can feel comfortable and enjoy the moviegoing experience.

Why are sensory friendly screenings important? For individuals with sensory sensitivities, traditional movie screenings can be a challenging experience. The loud sounds, flashing lights, and unfamiliar environment can cause anxiety, stress, and discomfort. This can make it difficult for individuals and their families to enjoy the movie experience together. Sensory friendly screenings provide a safe space so everybody has the opportunity to enjoy the moviegoing experience in the cinema with their friends and family.

We believe in the power of film to bring people together and create meaningful experiences. Our sensory friendly screenings are just one way that we’re working to create an inclusive and welcoming community where everyone can enjoy the magic of movies. For more information, visit our Accessibility page. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to

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