EXCLUSIVE: We have just received word that No. 2 film exhibitor Regal Cinemas is requiring all patrons to wear face masks.
In an updated policy made public Friday on the chain’s website, “As related to our employees, guests will also be required to wear masks. Disposable masks will be made available as needed,” noted Regal.
Regal’s previous policy was similar to AMC’s initially reported one Thursday before it drew controversy, along with Cinemark’s, which was that face-mask wearing would be enforced in those areas mandating them, but only encouraged in those pockets of America where restrictions have eased.
In response to the change, a Regal spokesperson told Deadline, “Our ultimate goal is to create a safe environment for our guests and employees. This is a change to our previous policy on masks based on feedback received from our customers.”
We have yet to hear if Cinemark will update its policy; that chain opens a handful of cinemas in the Dallas-Forth Worth area today. Earlier this morning, Alamo Drafthouse released a statement that all moviegoers, upon that chain’s reopening, will need to wear masks.
In expounding on AMC’s flex face mask policy Thursday to Variety, CEO and president Adam Aron said that the chain was looking to avoid “political controversy” in insisting all moviegoers wear masks. Those remarks drew immediate backlash on social media forcing the No. 1 chain to reverse its policy this morning, and insisting that all moviegoers wear masks until further notice.
“With the full support of our scientific advisors, we are reversing course and are changing our guest mask policy,” AMC’s Aron said today. “As we reopen theatres, we now will require that all AMC guests nationwide wear masks as they enter and enjoy movies at our theatres. The speed with which AMC moved to revise our mask policies is a reflection of our commitment to the safety and health of our guests.”
Regal will begin re-opening its theaters on July 10 after being closed since March due to the coronavirus.