AMC theaters across the United States are shut down due to coronavirus as Americans do their best to flatten the curve of the pandemic’s spread through social distancing, and now we know the theater chain won’t charge customers for their movie memberships while they can’t see films.
The spring and summer movie slate was already severely altered by coronavirus as Hollywood feared low box office numbers for big films as people feared the impact of the virus, and as the situation got worse and entire sectors of public life shut down it became clear that seeing movies is simply a bad idea right now. Over the weekend AMC sent out an email to its customers outlining some social distancing and enhanced cleaning measures that its locations would implement, including limiting capacity to 50 percent in theaters and encouraging people to spread out. But as more cities closed down businesses altogether and limited the number of people allowed to gather in a place to double digits the movie industry became impossible to sustain.
Most major theaters announced they were closing on Monday, including AMC. And on Tuesday the chain sent a notification to members of its monthly Stubs A-List program — which lets them see three movies a week for a monthly fee of up to $24.99 — that it would suspend memberships and subscription fees while locations remain closed.
It’s unclear when theaters will reopen at this point, and even what movies will be available when they do. The theater’s app has a note that says all theaters are closed while encouraging users to browse its streaming movies selection, a recent addition to the brick and mortar chain’s offerings.