Cinemark, the third-largest movie theater chain in the U.S., is set to reopen later this month. It has been expected for some time now that theaters would be reopening in July. While that could still very well be the case for AMC and Regal, as well as other smaller chains, Cinemark will begin a multi-phased reopening plan in June.
The reveal was made during a recent quarterly earnings report. Due to the theater shutdown in March, things were bad as the company's revenue totaled $543.6 million, down 24 percent compared to last year. CEO Mark Zoradi, in a statement, explained that the company is looking forward and expressed optimism. Here's what Zoardi had to say.
"We were forced to close all of our theaters in the middle of March, which had a significant impact on our first quarter results, and continues to impact us today. We are looking forward to welcoming our guests and team members back to our theaters and are pleased to have now shifted our attention to domestic re-opening, which we plan to initiate in a multi-phased approach beginning June 19."
"Our heightened sight and sound technology, giant screens and shared communal auditoriums provide a deeply immersive entertainment experience, as well as a transcendent escape from reality, that simply cannot be replicated at home. After months of home-sheltering, I am optimistic that these unparalleled factors offer movie-goers a much-needed relief that bodes well for Cinemark, and our industry as a whole, as theaters re-launch."
At this time, it hasn't been made clear how many of the company's 345 locations will be opening on June 19. It also hasn't been revealed what states will see theaters opening first. In any event, this means moviegoers could, barring a change in plans, be heading back to the movies in just over two weeks.
One of the biggest questions facing the industry right now is whether or not Warner Bros. will release Tenet, the latest from Christopher Nolan, on its current July 17 date. That will require a lot of theaters to be open to make it financially viable for the studio to do so. As Mark Zoradi tells it, they have been in contact with the studio, who he says is optimistic about the prospect.
"We've been in close contact with Warner Bros. and they remain optimistic and positive as well as Christopher Nolan about the July 17 opening."
Most big 2020 releases have been pushed to much later in the year, if not well into 2021. Disney's Mulan is also on deck for a July release currently. When theaters do reopen, they will be enforcing social distancing guidelines, as well as other measures, to help ensure the safety of patrons and employees. With a lack of new movies to show, it's expected that chains will rely on older blockbusters to try and get meat in seats. We'll be sure to keep you posted as the situation develops. This news was previously reported by Deadline.