AMC Theatres reported a first-quarter loss of $2.17 billion Tuesday but is hoping to rebound with a planned global reopening of its 1,000 theaters in July.
The company has already reopened 10 theaters in Norway, Germany, Spain and Portugal and expects to reopen almost all theaters in the U.S. and the U.K. next month.
The company didn't provide exact dates but did say theaters will be open in time for what it is hoping will be two summer blockbusters: Warner Bros.’ July 17 release of Christopher Nolan’s "Tenet" followed by the July 24 release of Disney’s "Mulan."
The company's stock closed down 7.1 percent Tuesday but was up 5 percent in after-hours trading.
Several states have already allowed movie theaters to reopen. America’s most populous state, California, gave movie theaters the go-ahead to reopen Friday as long as they limit capacity to 25 percent or 100 people. Film and TV production will also resume this week.
But even if states do allow movie theaters to fully reopen in the near future, changes in consumer behavior could hurt theaters in the long run. A mid-May survey by sports and events analytics firm Performance Research found that 70 percent of Americans would rather watch new releases at home and only 13 percent would prefer the theater.
Movie theaters across Europe started shutting down in February and AMC announced a complete shutdown of its theaters on March 17. As a result, AMC's revenue dipped to $941.5 million, down from $1.2 billion a year earlier.
Following the mid-March theater shutdown some studios announced that theatrical releases like Universal's "Trolls World Tour" would be going straight to streaming services.
AMC said at the time that it was cutting ties with Universal and would no longer screen its movies. But today, AMC said in its release, "While we are in active dialogue with Universal, no movies made by Universal Studios are currently on our docket."
Before the shutdowns, AMC was having a strong year with total revenue up 10 percent through February. AMC CEO and President Adam Aron said the company is trying to get back to those pre-pandemic levels.
“We are confident we are taking the necessary steps on a broad array of fronts to ensure AMC’s future success as we navigate these turbulent and uncertain times,” Aron said.