Businesses have been struggling since COVID19 made its mark on the world in 2020. Many have found new ways of adapting to stay afloat until the deadly pandemic is a thing of the past. The movie industry has been hit especially hard, seeing a 70% drop in revenue to $12.6 billion in 2020, down from $42.5 in 2019. Case in point, North America’s largest cinema chain, AMC Theaters, received a cash injection of $917 million to save from filing for bankruptcy in December 2019. However, some cinemas are showing that they may be down, but not out. Some have begun renting out space to gamers since the roll out of new movies is down to a trickle.
South Korea’s largest theater chain, CGV, came up with the idea of renting out theater space to bring in a new revenue system. Up to four people can rent a theater for $90 for two hours before 6pm, which increases to $135 afterward. Gamers can bring their own systems and controllers.
In the US, Memphis-based Malco allows up to 20 people to hire a screen at its 36 cinemas across Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee. The prices for service, which is called Malco Select, are $100 for two hours or $150 for three.
While this method does not draw in anywhere near as much money as screening a new movie would, it is a little something that has the potential to gain traction and become popular. Although, this is not the first time something like this has occurred. In 2019, Super League Gaming partnered with several theaters chains to host e-sports tournaments for a few hours when the film industry hit a six-year low to open that year.
So, would you want to rent a movie theater for a gaming session with your buds? And if so, what would be playing.
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