Odeon cinemas in CRISIS: Cinema chain facing closure in six months?
AMC Entertainment, the owner of Odeon cinemas, has been downgraded by debt ratings agency S&P Global. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the world’s largest cinema chain has only six months of cash remaining. AMC must raise its capital or see attendance improve as the company struggles through the coronavirus pandemic.
The agency said: “Given our expectations for a high rate of cash burn, we believe the company will run out of liquidity within the next six months unless it is able to raise additional capital, which we view as unlikely, or attendance levels materially improve.”
AMC in the US and Odeon in the UK shut down their cinemas back in March before some locations began to reopen in the summer.
However, low attendance and a lack of blockbuster movies to screen have made business slow for movie theatres.
In a new report, S&P Global argued that AMC “continues to struggle operationally and financially because U.S. attendance remains weak after reopening, additional major theatrical releases are delayed and its cash burn might accelerate now that its theatres are open.”
The debt ratings agency pointed out that smaller capacity at cinemas and audiences choosing streaming over risking going out was likely to continue into 2021.
S&P Global added: “The negative outlook reflects our view that a default, distressed exchange, or redemption appears to be inevitable within six months, absent unanticipated significantly favourable changes in the issuer’s circumstances.” Express.co.uk have contacted AMC for comment.
After months of shut down, Christopher Nolan’s Tenet opened in UK cinemas and some US states a couple of months ago.
However, Mulan skipped movie theatres and went to premium access on Disney+, while a whole host of other tentpole movies have shifted to 2021. Now the earliest to open are Dune and Wonder Woman 1984 at Christmas.
All eyes were on James Bond movie No Time To Die, set to hit UK cinemas on November 12 and in the US a week later.
But yesterday Universal Pictures announced that the Daniel Craig 007 movie would be delayed to April 2, 2021.
The official James Bond social media accounts wrote: “MGM, Universal and Bond producers, Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, today announced the release of NO TIME TO DIE, the 25th film in the James Bond series, will be delayed until 2 April 2021 in order to be seen by a worldwide theatrical audience.
“We understand the delay will be disappointing to our fans but we now look forward to sharing NO TIME TO DIE next year.”
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As it stands there are now no major movies between October and Christmas, as cinemas struggle to remain open.
With grave concerns for the film exhibition business, who knows what state cinemas will be in to show blockbusters in 2021.
It’s all well and good delaying big movies for the sake of profitability, but if there are no cinemas to show them in what’s the point?
While No Time To Die has moved to April, there’s no guarantee that the pandemic will be largely over by then.
It’s certainly not beyond the realm of possibility for the new Bond film to be moved again to the summer or late 2021.
Meanwhile, studios have decided to put certain films straight to premium video-on-demand.
Most recently this was the case with Robert Zemeckis’ The Witches, which will now stream on HBO Max.
While Borat 2 has been bought by Amazon Prime and lands on the platform on October 23.
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