AMC Theatres, the world's largest movie-theater operator and a unit of AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (AMC), said it will not require patrons to wear face masks once theaters reopen, Variety reported Thursday ( /). In an interview, AMC CEO Adam Arom told Variety: "We did not want to be drawn into a political controversy. We thought it might be counterproductive if we forced mask wearing on those people who believe strongly that it is not necessary. We think that the vast majority of AMC guests will be wearing masks." AMC Theatres employees will be required to wear masks, and the theaters will sell masks to moviegoers who want them. AMC is making a number of changes to its theaters amid the pandemic, such as reduced seating and new cleaning procedures. AMC said Thursday it aims to open more than 400 theaters in the U.S. on July 15 ( ), and hopes to have almost all operational by the end of July. AMC Entertainment said earlier this month it expects a first-quarter net loss of up to $2.4 billion due to months-long closures due to the coronavirus pandemic. AMC shares rose Thursday, but are down 22% year to date, compared to the S&P 500's 3.6% decline this year.
-Mike Murphy; 415-439-6400; AskNewswires@dowjones.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
June 18, 2020 20:50 ET (00:50 GMT)
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