Wed, 23 Sep 2020

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 13 (Xinhua) -- AMC Theatres announced Thursday that the largest U.S. movie theater chain with Chinese conglomerate Wanda Group owning a majority stake will reopen next week in the country with one-day-only 15-cent movie ticket pricing.

"As part of AMC's Centennial Celebration, all AMC U.S. theatre locations that open on August 20 will offer all available seats for all movies that day for the 1920's admission price of 15 cents each," said the company in a press release.

AMC was founded in 1920 with a theater at 12th Street and Grand Boulevard in Kansas City, Missouri. It is now the largest movie exhibition company in the United States, the largest in Europe and the largest throughout the world with approximately 1,000 theaters and 11,000 screens across the globe.

AMC will resume theater operations at more than 100 U.S. locations on Aug. 20. Approximately 300 additional AMC locations around the country are expected to open during the following two weeks, leading to the release of Disney's latest installment in the X-Men Cinematic Universe, "The New Mutants" on Aug. 28 and Warner Bros.' spy film "Tenet" on Sept. 3, according to the company.

The company also announced it is bringing back some classic movies, such as a special 10th anniversary edition of Christopher Nolan's "Inception," "Back to the Future," "Beauty and the Beast" and "Black Panther," which will all be priced at only 5 U.S. dollars per ticket after the reopening day but new releases will be at normal current-day pricing.

The company noted it is going to implement rigorous cleaning and safety protocols for the reopening, including reducing auditorium capacities and social distancing. All guests and employees are required to wear masks, while hand sanitizers and disinfecting wipes will be widely available throughout theaters.

"We are thrilled to once again open our doors to American moviegoers who are looking for an opportunity to get out of their houses and apartments and escape into the magic of the movies," said Adam Aron, CEO and President of AMC Theatres in the press release.

AMC suspended operations at all of its domestic and international theaters between Feb. 23 and March 17 in response to COVID-19 safety concerns. The company has resumed operations at more than 130 international theaters but twice postponed reopening in the United States amid the pandemic.

AMC reported last week a net loss of 561 million U.S. dollars in the second quarter due to the pandemic. The company's total revenue in the quarter ending June 30 fell 98.7 percent to 18.9 million dollars from 15.06 billion dollars a year ago.

AMC, Regal Cinemas and other major theater chains suffering financial hardship amid the pandemic are eager to invite audiences to return to the theatrical experience after months-long closure.

"Tenet" and Disney's long-awaited China-set live-action film "Mulan" are hopes of Hollywood and cinema owners to salvage this summer season. But Disney announced earlier this month that "Mulan" will debut online on Sept. 4 rather than in theaters in the United States. The decision is a major blow for U.S. theater owners.

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