Yesterday moviegoers in New York received some welcome good news. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that cinemas in NYC will finally be able to reopen on March 5th. Of course, with strict COVID-19 protocols, it will be 25% busy, but that will be almost exactly a year since the New York City theaters opened. Of course, New York was a focal point for the pandemic, but with things finally pointing in the right direction, going to the big city movies is only a week or two away. Sit down for more, but the Big Apple residents may soon see things on the big screen …
Here is part of The Hollywood Reporter’s story:
Hollywood received a huge boost on Monday when it was revealed that theaters in New York City that have been closed for nearly a year due to COVID-19 will be allowed to reopen on March 5, albeit with strict restrictions.
New York City is the second largest cinema market in the country after Los Angeles and is vital if studios hope to recover from the pandemic.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the decision during a press briefing on Monday. In recent days, Cuomo has been criticized for keeping cinemas closed while bars and gyms reopened when the pandemic numbers subsided.
“Theater owners are excited to announce that New York cinemas are safe to reopen. Strict voluntary health and safety protocols have enabled cinemas across the country to operate safely and responsibly at higher capacity for many months without a single outbreak of COVID-19 attributable to cinemas, “the National Association of Theater Owners said in response the announcement.
“New York City is an important market for moviegoers in the US. The reopening gives the film distributors confidence in the determination and adherence to their theatrical releases and is an important step for the recovery of the entire industry, ”the NATO statement continued. “We look forward to expanding capacity from 25 to 50 percent in the near future so the theaters can operate profitably.”
AMC Entertainment and Regal Cinemas have a strong presence in New York City. AMC always said that many of its locations could open with two weeks notice. Regal, owned by Cineworld, has been completely closed since last year, and there’s still no word on how quickly their NYC locations could be back up and running.
In a statement, AMC CEO Adam Aron said all 13 locations in New York City will open on March 5th, including AMC Empire 25, the largest movie theater in the country.
“Governor Cuomo’s announcement that cinemas will reopen in New York City in the first week of March is another important step in restoring the health of the cinema industry and our company,” Aron said in a statement. More than 80 percent of the track’s locations are now reopening in the US after the Safe & Clean program was developed.
The first major Hollywood opening to benefit from the reopening in New York is Disney’s Raya and the Last Dragon, which hits the silver screen on March 5th (it will also be available for $ 30 on Disney +).
Warner Bros. ‘ The family film Tom & Jerry, which opens on February 26th, will also be a beneficiary.
It’s not clear when in Los Angeles – where cases are higher – theaters can turn on the lights, but the New York reopening marks a milestone.
The larger Los Angeles market accounted for nearly 9 percent of all box office revenue in 2019, while the New York DMA made 7.4 percent.
New York City cinemas are allowed to reopen 25 percent or no more than 50 people in an auditorium. Masks, assigned seating, and advanced air filtration are required.
Many theaters that are open elsewhere in the US have the same rules, although capacity is 50 percent in some areas.
Around 39 percent of theaters in North America are currently in operation. When New York goes online, studios will certainly be more inclined to release their title jam.
Stay tuned for more …