In light of the recent White House news conference recommending Americans to avoid gatherings of over 10 people, Regal Cinemas has made the decision to close all 543 of its US theaters until further notice, Variety has reported.
This follows the news that all cinemas and entertainment venues in Los Angeles and New York would have to close on the order of Mayor Eric Garcetti and Mayor Bill de Blasio respectively. Both the mayoral closures and Regal’s shutdown have no end date specified, and will likely be evaluated as the situation progresses.
Regal announces closure of all theatre locations starting Tuesday, March 17, 2020, as a precaution amid the current circumstances. All theatres will remain closed until further notice. Please check back soon. We look forward to serving you again as soon as possible.
— Regal (@RegalMovies) March 16, 2020
“It’s our goal to provide a safe and healthy environment for our employees and guests,” Regal said on its Twitter account. “We value your patronage and have no doubt we will be serving you again as soon as possible with a full slate of Hollywood blockbusters.” Members of Regal’s Unlimited subscription pass will have their regular payments suspended until the theatre chain re-opens.
Prior to its full closure, Regal had already put in measures to limit capacity of their theatres by at least 50%, while AMC theaters has limited their capacity to only 50 people.
Universal Pictures has announced that it will start releasing its movies that are currently in theaters to home release as soon as March 20. This currently includes titles like The Invisible Man, The Hunt, Emma, and Trolls: World Tour. Future releases are likely to drop on digital home video on the same day they come to theaters.