Stephen King went to the movies this past weekend and now feels "terrible" for the film industry. Movie theaters are slowly starting to open their doors again for the first time since March. However, there are still a large number of theaters that remain closed, like in Los Angeles and New York, due to the ongoing public health crisis. With production shutdowns and release date delays, theaters barely have any new material and are struggling to get viewers into their seats.
Stephen King went to his local movie theater over the weekend. For theaters that are able to open, they are all practicing new safety protocols, which King witnessed during his visit. The iconic horror author did not mention what movie he went to see, but it sounds like the whole experience was rather depressing for him. You can read what he had to say below.
"I went to the movies last night. First time since February. No problem social distancing. Saturday night, 7 screens, 4 total customers including me and my nephew. I feel terrible for the film industry."
It's no secret that movie theaters are struggling to stay afloat right now. With each big movie vacating this year in favor of the next, one wonders how much longer theaters will be able to keep the doors open. Regal theaters have decided to shut down for the foreseeable future, while Cinemark and AMC will remain open. However, it is believed that AMC only has around 6 more months of money to remain open and are asking the United States government for help.
At this time, President Donald Trump has halted negotiations with Democrats over a relief program until after the election. This is leaving a lot of businesses, that stretch way further than movie theaters, in a lurch. It will be very interesting to see what the future looks like with more and more movies going straight to VOD, or theater and VOD hybrid releases. Disney has just announced that Pixar's highly anticipated Soul will now skip theaters altogether in favor of a premiere on Disney+. International theaters that are able to stay open will get a theatrical premiere at a later date.
Marvel Studios and Disney are still planning on putting out Black Widow and Eternals on the big screen, and Warner Bros. plans to do the same thing with Dune. It's just going to be a while before anyone gets to see them. With so much uncertainty during these times, the entertainment industry could be forever changed after all of this, which means visiting a movie theater could become something rare. The worlds of live music and theater are facing the exact same problems and are looking for new ways to provide entertainment. You can check out Stephen King's Twitter observation about the entertainment industry above.