Cinemark Theaters Staying Open For Now

On a day movie theater stocks took a tumble on Wall Street following news Regal Cinemas would be re-closing all screens temporarily, beginning Oct. 8, No. 3 exhibitor Cinemark said it would maintain operations of about 80% of its screens.

Plano, Texas-based Cinemark brands include Century, CinéArts, Tinseltown and Rave, operating 534 theatres and 5,977 screens globally (332 theatres and 4,522 screens domestically; 202 theatres and 1,455 screens throughout South and Central America).

The chain lost $170 million in its most-recent fiscal period (ended June 30), with revenue down 67% to $552.6 million, compared with $1.67 billion for the six months ended June 30, 2019.

“Cinemark’s reopening plan was designed with multiple contingencies in place to ensure we are able to be nimble and react as needed to this ever-changing environment,” the chain said in a media statement. “We do not currently have plans to close our U.S. theatres and are continuing to align with demand, including reducing operating hours and days while we await new studio content to encourage theatrical moviegoing.”

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Cinemark might be waiting a while. Warner Bros. plans to further delay the release of sci-fi reboot Dune to 2021 from its original Dec. 18, 2020, release date. That follows MGM’s decision to again postpone releasing James Bond movie No Time To Die with Daniel Craig until next year.

Warner Bros.’ Labor Day release of Tenet was supposed to jumpstart domestic moviegoing. Instead, the Christopher Nolan-directed espionage thriller has generated just $45.1 million domestically after five weekends in the United States. The film has generated $262 million internationally for a total gross of $307.1 million.

Cinemark Oct. 1 unveiled a marketing campaign giving away 1,000 “Private Watch Parties,” for Halloween, beginning Oct. 9.  A Cinemark Private Watch Party offers the opportunity to rent an entire auditorium for up to 20 guests to watch a film of their choice with the group of their choice. Standard pricing for a Private Watch Party begins at $99 with no minimum concession purchase.

Meanwhile, No. 1 exhibitor AMC Theatres has not provided updates whether it plans to close any domestic screens. Analysts last week suggested the chain has about six months of liquidity left without ticket sales.

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