2017 is coming to a close, leaving in its wake a cluster of Oscar-worthy contenders for Best Motion Picture in the 90th Academy Awards ceremony. Moviegoers on their way to catch a matinee at Regal Cinemas will find an unexpected blockbuster hit (Hint: It's not a movie). Frito-Lay, the parent company of cheese-flavored snack brand Cheetos, is releasing an orange-dusted update on the usual butter-and-salt movie popcorn called Crunchy Cheetos.
A Twitter user spotted Cheetos popcorn at a Regal Cinemas location back in November, but according to Food and Wine, Dec. 15 will mark the official rollout date of Cheetos Popcorn at Regal Cinemas nationwide.
The concession snack will be available in 32-ounce cups filled to the brim with Cheetos-flavored popcorn covered in cheesy Cheetos flavor (the "butter') tossed in Crunchy Cheetos (the "salt") into one heaping bucket for a potentially noisy, crackly, dusty mess of a movie-munching experience. If you thought leaving the theater with buttery hands was messy, imagine your fingertips tinted orange and palm-sized stains powdered down your shirt and across your pants. Consider plastic gloves.
Cheetos crossed its orange-dusted paws over other popular snack foods, like Burger King's Mac N' Cheetos and Chuck E. Cheese's Cheetos-topped pizza, as if to remind us all that Cheetos is as much of a condiment to other snacks as it is a snack itself.
The release of "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" was anticipated to be one of the busiest weekends of this year at the box office, which intentionally coincided with Cheetos Popcorn's debut. Due to fewer movie attendees every year, movie theater chains and businesses are left to scramble about to adapt to changing consumer demand.
The subscription movie ticketing service, MoviePass, offers customers a chance to watch one movie in theaters per day, every day. Add in a wildly popular cheese snack mash-up to the mixture and doors will start busting in.
One Twitter user wrote, "Someone just shared a link that you can now get cheetos popcorn at the movie theatre and that might actually get me to go to the movie theatre."
There can be such a thing as a bad movie experience: an amorous couple sits directly behind you, a pumpkin head blocks your view of the big screen, you guessed the movie ending at three minutes in. But at least at Regal Cinemas, you can walk away leaving an orange cloud trail and a satisfied cheese craving.