Will Missoula’s AMC Theaters Survive the Pandemic?
One of the heartbreaking effects of the COVID-19 pandemic is the uncertainty businesses face as we move deeper into the year. Almost every business has been affected in some way by reduced occupancy, customers that are nervous about returning to public places, and even ongoing closures that remain for many. It's sad to see so many places affected by something that was so unexpected and out of their control.
Missoula has yet to see the return of movie theaters as we work our way through the reopening of the state. The Roxy Theater opted to stay closed for a while longer because they don't feel comfortable reopening just yet. They're still working on an outdoor screening space for the summer. Things might not be quite as rosy for AMC Theaters. Of course, we have AMC locations in Missoula on N. Reserve and at Southgate Mall.
An NBC Montana story says AMC has announced they may not be able to come out on the other side of the pandemic. As of now, all of their theaters remain shut down until the end of June. If AMC was forced to close, that would be a huge hit to movie-goers across the country and also leave Missoula without a major theater chain.
What do you think about the idea of our AMC locations closing down? It would take away a place where teens can go to hang with friends. We lose that place where someone on a first date can have just enough time to judge the other person and decide if there will be date number two. And, there would be no place to duck out of work early while you tell your wife and kids that you'll probably be home in another two hours because it's been one of those brutal days at the office. I mean, not like I know what that last example is all about - it's just something I've heard about. Ha!
We'll wait and see what the future holds for AMC and how it will affect our movie viewing in Missoula. It seems like things might get a little rocky even if AMC can reopen in the next month. If movie companies have to continue to delay new releases it creates a whole other batch of problems for the theater chain.