AMC Theaters detailed its plans to reopen theaters in the United States, as well as a new deadline for its MoviePass-style A-List subscription, in an email sent to customers Wednesday.
As of August 20, AMC plans to open more than 100 theaters and says it will continue to open venues “so that about two-thirds of our cinemas across the country should be open no later than September 3”. The AMC has repeatedly delayed its reopening as the spread of the coronavirus has caused massive spikes in positive cases in parts of the United States that have begun to ease restrictions.
The company, the largest theater chain in the country, operates approximately 600 theaters in the United States. But AMC faced significant challenges to its business during the COVID-19 pandemic due to the forced closures and near-stop in Hollywood releases, forcing AMC to lay off large swaths of its corporate workforce as it neared bankruptcy.
“The remaining AMC locations will be opened after we obtain further clearance from state and local authorities which is safe to do,” the company writes in an email sent to AMC A-List members. As part of its new safety measures, AMC says all staff and customers are required to wear masks, following a controversial remark by AMC CEO Adam Aron in June in which he suggested wearing the mask among customers would be was encouraged but not mandatory.
The email says customers “can expect extra continued cleaning and disinfection of high traffic areas,” that hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes would be widely available, and that AMC “will significantly limit seating capacity. to sit in our auditoriums “. The company says it will use “high-tech HEPA vacuums” and “upgraded MERV 13 air filters wherever possible.”
Among the films that AMC intends to screen as part of its reopening is that of Disney The new mutants starting August 28 and that of Christopher Nolan Principle starting from 3 September. “As for the library titles, we will be showing all these beloved films on the big screens at AMC: Back to the Future, The beauty and the Beast, Black Panther, bloodshot, ghost Buster, Goonies, Fat, I still believe, Jumanji: the next level, Sonic the hedgehog, is Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back“.
As for A-List, AMC’s subscription service that allows customers to watch up to three movies a week, the company says current subscribers who had plans suspended during the COVID-19 pandemic now have until 1. December 2020 to reactivate or cancel membership. Starting that day, AMC says it will start charging customers again.
“Now, we’ve created the ability for you to control when your A-List subscription is reactivated. You can choose to resume your A-List subscription anytime between now and December 1, 2020. We will email you when the your favorite theater will be open and then, and only when you feel ready to return to our theaters, simply visit your account on our mobile app or website to reactivate your membership. Then, you will be able to immediately start performing A-List movie bookings, “the email reads.
AMC says its customers can cancel at any time and plans to communicate any changes to their subscription, including its plan to start billing again, “well in advance”. The company says it is making a number of other changes to its A-List subscription designed to give the company more control over pricing changes.
First, AMC says it is reducing the window in which it can make “program changes” – in other words, price increases – from 90 days to 30 days starting December 1st. It is also removing the ability to earn reward points on the monthly subscription fee for A-List on that date. But AMC guarantees it won’t raise the price of A-List, which costs $ 19.95 to $ 23.95 per month depending on the market, until spring next year.