AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc., the world’s largest movie-theater chain, registered a $2.2 billion net loss in the first quarter, underscoring the devastating economic blow the pandemic has had on the exhibition industry.

AMC saw “virtually no revenue” in the two weeks of the quarter ended March 30 when theaters closed—a 14-day period that devastated the company’s results. In the year-earlier period, the company lost $130.2 million. Revenue was $941.5 million for the period, down from $1.2 billion last year. To survive, AMC needs to get all its theaters open and selling tickets again—a move AMC Chief Executive Adam Aron said Tuesday he expects to happen by July.

“These are truly unprecedented times,” Adam Aron, AMC’s CEO, said in a statement. “After starting the year with two solid months of revenue growth compared to last year, in mid-March we were forced to pivot the entire company to respond to the effects of the pandemic.” The company’s top priorities remain “the safety and well-being of our guests and associates,” Aron said, as well as “taking sweeping actions to preserve the long-term viability of AMC Entertainment.”

The company said that it is reopening its theaters next month to showcase “Tenet,” Warner Bros.’ Christopher Nolan’s twisty thriller, which is slated for July 17, and “Mulan,” Disney’s live action remake of the 1998 animated classic, which is set for July 24. AMC added that “many things can change between now and July,” but it detailed the steps it is taking to reopen safely given Covid-19.

They include working with local, national, and international officials to coordinate the timing and requirements needed for it to reopen. It also said that it was partnering with Clorox, which will advise the company how to best make its theaters “as safe and clean as possible.” “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.

Todd Horwitz Chief Strategist
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