The History of Popcorn and the Movies

Walk into any movie theater, and all your senses start firing for popcorn. But this hasn’t always been the case. In fact, just the opposite. In the early 20th century, the thought of selling snacks, no matter how delicious, was shunned for theater owners. Theaters were designed for high-end appearances with lavish carpets and regal decor, and couldn’t risk carnival snacks making a mess of their palace-like ambiance. Also remember, films were silent at the time, and all that crunching would surely be distracting. Not to mention these theaters didn’t have the ventilation required to operate popcorn machines. 

Enter the middleman. Popcorn vendors literally started popping up outside theaters. Mobile popcorn machines made it easy to produce a relatively cheap snack in mass amounts. By this time, popcorn was such a popular street food snack that theaters would be remiss not to take advantage of the opportunity for extra profits. And so many theater owners allowed popcorn vendors to sell outside their lobby for a daily rental fee.  

This arrangement seemed to be a win-win for customers, theaters, and vendors, but as the Great Depression settled in, theaters needed to cut out the middle person to stay in business. By the early 1940s, many remodels on lobby concession stands were complete as the trend of owners selling their own popcorn snacks spread across the country. Eventually profits were recouped by theaters and popcorn (along with going to the movies) remained an affordable luxury.

Today it’s hard to imagine walking into a theater without sensing popcorn is near. And it’s also easier than ever to have the same experience at home. Whether you’re off to see an action-packed film on the big screen or ready to cozy up on the couch with a big bowl of Pop ’N Dulge, there’s no question that popcorn makes everything better - and tastier. 

Find your favorite flavor!

Fun Facts About Popcorn

A recent survey showed that 92% of Americans like (or love) popcorn. Can you guess what the favored flavor is? If you said salty and buttery, you got it. More than 70% of popcorn lovers enjoy their snack seasoned with salt and butter with the runner up going to a cheese-flavored seasoning. 

More than 60% of people said they eat popcorn at the movies, but nearly the same amount said they eat it at home while watching tv or at-home movies. 

Americans eat enough popcorn in a year to fill the Empire State Building 18 times! And that number is projected to grow in the coming years.

A single kernel of popcorn can pop about 3 feet in the air! But it’s best to keep the lid on.

Like snowflakes, no two pieces of popcorn are identical.

Get poppin’ with a flavor-packed popcorn kit.