The announcement is a huge incentive for Hollywood Studios, despite strict restrictions that would limit capacity to 25 percent. Hollywood received a major boost Monday in New York City theaters – which have been closed for nearly a year because of COVID-19 – to be allowed to reopen on March 5, although there are strict restrictions in place.
New York City is the second-largest film market in the country behind Los Angeles and is significant if studios are expected to overcome the epidemic. Andrew Cuomo of the New York government announced the decision during a press event on Monday. In recent times, Cuomo was criticized for keeping theaters closed while bars and gyms were allowed to reopen as an epidemic.
“Theater owners are pleased with the announcement that New York City movie theaters will be allowed to reopen safely. Strict voluntary health and safety protocols have allowed many months of safe and responsibly high-capacity boundaries for theaters across the country The National Theater Association of Theater Owners said in response to the announcement, “There is a single outbreak of COVID-19 for movie theaters.”
A NATO statement said, “New York City is a major market for filmmaking in the US. Re-release there gives film distributors confidence in determining and holding their release dates, and that the entire industry Is an important step in the recovery. ” “We look forward to expanding capacity from 25 percent to 50 percent in the very near future so that theaters can work profitably.”
AMC Entertainment and Regal Cinema have a major presence in New York City, with AMC always stating that it could open several of its locations with two weeks’ notice. Regal, owned by Cineworld, has been completely shut down since last year, and there is no word yet on how fast their NYC sites can get back into the business. In a statement, AMC CEO Adam Aron said all 13 locations in New York City will open on March 5, including AMC 25, the nation’s largest cinema.
Aron said in a statement, “Governor Cuomo announces that movie theaters can reopen in New York in the first week of March. The movie is another important step toward restoring the health of the theater industry and our company.” More than 80 percent of the circuit’s locations are now in the U.S. after developing their “safe and clean” program.
The first big Hollywood to benefit from New York’s reopening will be Disney’s Raya and the Last Dragon, which is set to hit the big screen on March 5 (it will also be available for viewing at Disney + $ 30).
Warner Bros. ‘ The family film Tom and Jerry, which opens on 26 February, will also be a beneficiary. It is unclear whether Los Angeles – where matters are greater – will allow theaters to turn on the lights, but the reopening of New York is a milestone event.
The large Los Angeles market provided nearly 9 percent of all box office revenue in 2019, while the New York DMA changed to 7.4 percent. New York City theaters will be allowed to reopen at 25 percent capacity or no more than 50 people in an auditorium. Masks, seating area, and advanced air filtration will be required. Many theaters open elsewhere in the US, with the same rules, although in some areas the capacity is 50 percent.
Currently, about 38 percent of theaters in North America are in operation. With New York coming online, studios will certainly be keen to release a backlog of their titles. Some theaters just outside New York City were allowed to reopen last fall, although in some cases the bounce forced them to close again.