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AMC Finds a Way to Survive—and You Can Benefit

The company lets you rent a theater and choose from a list of movies
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 18, 2020 5:00 PM CDT

(Newser) – Missing the movie theater experience? Turns out you can rent an AMC theater starting at $99. And guess what—AMC can use the money amid devastating COVID-19 conditions, CNN Business reports. The basic deal is that AMC lets you rent a theater for 20 people and choose from a list of movies. Titles like Back to the Future, Jurassic Park, and Halloween will run you the basic $99, while Tenet or The War with Grandpa mean $50 more. Prices can also hit $350 based on your location and choice of food and drink, and there are possible extras like a microphone ($100) or more time to get your friends inside auditorium (over 15 minutes costs an extra $250). But consider AMC's financial situation.

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The company said revenues plunged roughly 22% compared to last year's first quarter amid the coronavirus lockdown, CNN Business reported in June. AMC later reopened 494 of 598 American theaters but still suffered about an 85% dropoff in attendance, per Fox Business. And AMC's survival strategy isn't unique: The dine-in theater chain Alamo is letting people reserve rooms for up to 30 guests for $300 with food and drink, while Cinemark—the third-biggest movie chain in America—is renting theaters for $99 or $175 depending on the movie and the day, per CNN Business. "It effectively becomes their giant living room," says Cinemark CEO Mark Zoradi, "with the best speaker system and sight and sound that you can get." (See how the delay of No Time to Die affected theaters.)

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