As movie theaters continue to struggle as the COVID-19 pandemic wears on, many theater chains are implementing novel strategies to try to encourage moviegoers to come back, even with big screen offerings limited as major blockbuster films shift release dates and even methods. Included in those novel efforts are lower cost full theater auditorium rentals and now, AMC Theatres is getting in on that as well, announcing that customers can rent out auditoriums for private screenings with rentals starting at $99.
According to the AMC website, customers can rent out an auditorium for a private screening party for up to 20 total people. The rentals start at $99 before tax, but the price can increase to $349 depending on several variables, including the movie being screened, theater location, and add-ons like food and drink. There are also charges for things such as a microphone to greet guests, extended access time to the theater, removing ads and trailers, and other options. In order to request a private auditorium rental, customers just need to fill out a form on the AMC website and a representative will contact them -- you can check out that form here.
AMC's process varies a bit from some off the other theaters offering auditorium rentals. Cinemark, for example, lists their available "Private Watch Party" times and allows customers to book them directly on the site with prices ranging between $99 and $149 depending on movie selected.
For AMC, the private auditorium rentals are part of the chain's efforts to continue operations as the industry continues to struggle. AMC recently revealed that it could run out of cash by the end of 2020 or potentially early 2021 as severely reduced attendance -- down by at least 85 percent in 494 of the 598 open AMC locations -- has had a devastating impact on the chain's finances.
"Given the reduced movie slate for the fourth quarter, in the absence of significant increases in attendance from current levels or incremental sources of liquidity, at the existing cash burn rate, the Company anticipates that existing cash resources would be largely depleted by the end of 2020 or early 2021," AMC said. "Thereafter, to meet its obligations as they become due, the Company will require additional sources of liquidity or increases in attendance levels. The required amounts of additional liquidity are expected to be material."
"There can be no assurance that the assumptions used to estimate our liquidity requirements and future cash burn will be correct, or that we will be able to achieve more normalized levels of attendance described above, which are materially higher than our current attendance levels, and our ability to be predictive is uncertain due to the unknown magnitude and duration of the COVID-19 pandemic," AMC reported.0comments
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