How many times have you driven by your local AMC theatre chain and bemoaned the lack of any films you may be interested in watching? What’s any self-respecting film fan to do when Dirty Grandpa Part 6 holds sway over three huge stadium-seating screens with nothing left over on the remaining screens but a plethora of super-hero CGI spectacles and computer animated movies about emoji’s and trolls? If you’re anything like ye olde reporter, you head home and fondle your Blu-ray Godfather box set and secretly make a wish for brighter cinematic days in the near future. Well film fans, worldwide pandemic be damned, there is some sunlight breaking in on an otherwise bleak scene according to our respectable East side cousins over at the Hollywood Reporter.
In an effort to offer movie patrons a safer theatre going experience during COVID, as well as in an effort to cater to a sizeable block of fans who really don’t want to plunk down their hard-earned greenbacks for the latest Zack Snyder or Michael Bay opus, AMC Entertainment – one of the largest theatre chains in the world – is offering exclusive and private rental screenings for up to twenty family members and friends, all in an effort to not only mitigate exposure to the pandemic, but also to financially help them stay afloat as the world awaits an effective vaccine; this move by the ailing movie giant falls in line behind what other leaders in the theatre exhibition game such as Alamo Drafthouse and Cinemark are already doing and AMC is betting that it may be just the lifeline they will need in order to stay financially solvent as we head into winter.
So what are the details you might ask as you envision watching a 70mm print of director Jack Starrett’s Race with the Devil on the silver screen? Private hires of film screens for up to 20 family and friends will be made available courtesy of an automated booking and purchase system on AMC’s website and mobile app. Fans will then be able to select a preferred film along with a show time. Starting price for this cineaste fever dream is $99.00 each.
“The results and feedback from our guests about AMC Safe & Clean have been overwhelmingly positive, and private theatre rentals at AMC provides an additional layer of safety and security to those moviegoers who are looking to see movies with just their family members and friends,” AMC chief content officer Elizabeth Frank offered in a statement, also citing over 110,000 inquiries they received from around the nation after an initial beta launch of private hires.
Prices may vary per movie, based on location and specific AMC theatres.
The question that lingers and can only be answered in light of an effective vaccine (c’mon Pfizer!) is how this new methodology may or may not ultimately change the landscape of how we watch movies at our local movie houses. Suddenly however, the prospect of a Dirty Grandpa Part 7 seems a little less frightening with this intriguing concept. Stay tuned, pop culture lovers!