As expected with NYC and LA cinemas still not opened, and Tenet, the first big event pic heading to Aug. 12, the No. 1 exhibitor in the U.S., Europe and the Middle East, AMC, will now reopen its circuit on July 30 instead of July 15. On the new date, the Leawood, KS-based chain will resume operations of 450 U.S. theatres as part of its phased plan to bring its 600-plus multiplexes back on line by early August. AMC has been shuttered nationwide since mid-March due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Adam Aron, CEO & President, AMC Theatres said, “We continue to devote extraordinary resources into our plan to operate our theatres with a hyper commitment to the safety and health of our guests and associates, notably in the United States through our new AMC Safe & Clean initiative. Our theatre general managers across the U.S. started working full time again today and are back in their theatres gearing up to get their buildings fully ready just a few weeks from now for moviegoers. That happy day, when we can welcome guests back into most of our U.S. theatres, will be Thursday, July 30.”
AMC will be reopened in time for the first fresh wide release post exhibition’s COVID-19 shutdown: Solstice Studio’s Russell Crowe road rage movie Unhinged.
Once the U.S. reopening commences, AMC plans to open its multiplexes in all 15 countries that it operates. Already, there are some venues open abroad.
When AMC announced it’s reopening plans two weeks ago, CEO Adam Aron got himself in hot water when he told Variety he didn’t want to make a political issue, and enforce the wearing of masks in areas of the U.S. where such safety restrictions had eased. That said, AMC would still enforce the wearing of masks in areas that were still mandating such COVID-19 precautions. A social media backlash erupted and Aron reversed course, creating a full circuit wide restriction that all guests to AMC Theatres will be required to wear masks. Alamo Drafthouse had already decided before AMC they would enforce a circuit wide requirement that all guests must wear face masks, with Regal Cinemas following AMC’s lead. Cinemark continues to uphold its policy that they will enforce its guests to wear masks only in those areas of the country that require it.
AMC is implementing several safety protocols upon its reopening, such as the electro-static cleaning of seats and partnering with Clorox. More details can be found here.