Update: Cinemark has announced the phased reopening of its theaters nationwide. Among those opening Friday, July 30, with new safety protocols is the Cinemark 20 and XD theater at Las Palmas Marketplace in Far East El Paso. It will show "comeback classics," including "Jurassic Park," "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and "Back to the Future." The company has posted more information about its safety protocols on its website.
Original story: AMC Theatres, the nation’s largest cinema chain, delayed the opening of its more than 1,000 theaters in the United States until mid-to-late August. The move was not a surprise, given that it arrived on the heels of the Warner Bros. announcement last week that “Tenet,” its big-budgeted thriller from Christopher Nolan, would not be released on its rescheduled date of Aug. 12. No new date has yet been set.
Cinemark, which operates several movie theaters in El Paso, also postponed its reopening plans. The chain had planned to reopen many of its theaters nationwide Friday, but shifted its plans again. As of Friday it had not announced reopening dates for those theaters.
Alamo Drafthouse and Flix Brewhouse also remained closed in El Paso.
With the coronavirus showing no signs of abatement, the studios and their movie theater partners have been playing a game of chicken, postponing the return to moviegoing until the virus numbers show a decline. Disney, which had rescheduled its live-action adaptation of “Mulan” for Aug. 21, has yet to announce a date shift but is likely to do so.
Theater chains large and small are struggling with the ramifications of the pandemic. Though they received initial assistance from the federal government in the form of the Paycheck Protection Program, they are still grappling with soaring fixed costs and zero revenue.
Overseas, AMC says that approximately one-third of its cinemas in Europe and the Middle East are already open and operating normally.