Labor Day weekend is usually pretty slow for the box office. Theater owners want to change that.
NEW YORK — For one day, movie tickets will be just $3 at a majority of U.S. theaters as part of a newly launched “National Cinema Day” to attract moviegoers during the box office lull.
Cinema FoundationThe nonprofit arm of the National Association of Theater Owners announced Sunday that September 3 will be a nationwide discount day at more than 3,000 theaters and more than 30,000 screens. Major chains, including AMC and Regal CinemasAll major movie studios are participating as well. At participating theaters, tickets will be no more than $3 per show, per format.
Labor Day weekend is traditionally one of the slowest weekends in theaters. This year, the August lull has been particularly intense for exhibitors. Cineworld, which owns Regal Cinemas, Cited the undersupply of major new releases in its recent plans to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
But, if successful, National Cinema Day could fill theaters with moviegoers and possibly prompt them to return in the fall. Before each show, ticket buyers will be treated to a sizzle reel of upcoming films from A24, Amazon Studios, Disney, Focus Features, Lionsgate, Neon, Paramount, Sony Pictures Classics, Sony, United Artists Releasing, Universal, and Warner Bros. .
“After this summer’s record-breaking return to theaters, we wanted to do something to celebrate the arrival of movies,” Jackie Breneman, president of the Cinema Foundation, said in a statement. We are doing this as a ‘thank you’ to the movie watchers. happened this summer, and by offering an extra lure for those who haven’t yet returned it.”
After more than two years of the pandemic, movie theaters rebounded significantly over the summer, seeing business return to nearly pre-pandemic levels. Movies like “Top Gun: Maverick,” “Minions: Rise of the Grove,” “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” and “Jurassic World Dominion” pushed the domestic summer box office to $3.3 billion in ticket sales through Aug. 21. . According to data firm Comscore. That’s ahead of 2019’s total of about 20%, but exhibitors had about 30% fewer wide releases this year.
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Organizers of National Cinema Day described the event as an experiment that could become an annual fixture. While some other countries have experimented with cheaper same-day movie tickets, the initiative is the first of its kind in the US on such a large scale.