Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Tell no one - Back to the Secret Cinema botch-up and how it will impact its ongoing reputation

The lack of a clear explanation from the Secret Cinema organisers is hugely frustrating and slightly worrying in terms of their claims that the Back to the Future show is still going to go ahead today, so we shall just have to see, but at least they are staying true to the inherent philosophy of Secret Cinema - tell no one.

Last week Secret Cinema was set to open its latest offering - an immersive cinema experience based around Back to the Future... and then they cancelled it and then they cancelled it again; both times without providing a clear explanation. 

After a week's delay the show is set to launch today, but with many of the patrons left refunded and disgruntled, how will this setback impact Secret Cinema's ongoing reputation?


There is no question that the organisation of the Secret Cinema events are a logistical nightmare and a delay such as the current Back to the Future one was always going to happen at some point. 


"We are extremely sorry for the delayed communications of the last week. We know we let our audience down and will do everything we can to make it up to them." 
- Fabien Riggall, founder of Secret Cinema


The lack of a clear explanation from the Secret Cinema organisers is hugely frustrating and slightly worrying in terms of their claims that the Back to the Future show is still going to go ahead today, so we shall just have to see, but at least they are staying true to the inherent philosophy of Secret Cinema - tell no one.


Tell no one - they got that right!




In a sense, the fact that this happened with Back to the Future is a blessing, because it's part one of a trilogy, so if the organisers really wanted to redeem their reputation and build on what they have done this year, then it might in their interests to offer the full trilogy as a show in the near future and give all the patrons who fell by the wayside priority booking at a reduced rate next time around.


I was tempted, Back to the Future is one of my all time favourite films.






Secret Cinema and its public awareness has been steadily climbing over the last 10 years and, in addition to the Back to the Future show promising to be their biggest offering to date, the public awareness of it has completely eclipsed the coverage of the previous shows and especially so now that it has suffered this huge setback!

The type of highly immersive pubic exhibition experience Secret Cinema offers is still very much in its infancy, so hiccups are to be expected. This fiasco has identified a major public relations flaw in the overall Secret Cinema operation that, unlike with their previous minor slip-ups, they are really going to need to address this time around, once they (hopefully) get Back to the Future running.







Fortunately there is a growing taste for a public film experience superior to what the cineplexes are currently offering; by its very existence, this is something of which Secret Cinema is more than aware. Secret cinema has public demand on their side; a public that is now demanding them to sort their act out and Secret Cinema will go on to do just that.


London's very own Hill Valley bringing you right into the film.



The spectators active participation is an integral component of the experience that Secret Cinema offers; if Secret Cinema did not think or value this, then we would not have Secret Cinema, we would just have another cineplex offering.

The cancellations are unfortunate for all the patrons who have been brushed off, but this will no doubt improve Secret Cinema's public relations from here on out and increase the future public awareness of the tantalising experience it has to offer... when it goes to plan.

Ultimately, one thing is for sure: Secret Cinema is not a secret any more.

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