Coronavirus: AMC, Regal temporarily closing movie theaters nationwide amid outbreak

AMC, Regal temporarily close theaters amid coronavirus outbreak

The nation’s two largest movie theater chains are temporarily closing all their U.S. locations amid the coronavirus outbreak.

According to Variety and the Hollywood Reporter, both AMC Theatres and Regal Cinemas announced the closures, which take effect Tuesday, to comply with updated guidelines released Monday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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AMC Theatres, which earlier had capped attendance at 50 people per screening, said in a statement that “the new CDC guidelines that Americans should not gather in groups larger than 10 people make it impossible to open our theaters.”

“Still, the health and well-being of AMC guests and employees, and of all Americans, takes precedence above all else," CEO Adam Aron said.

The chain, which has more than 630 theaters across the U.S. and Canada, said the closings will last up to 12 weeks, Variety reported.

Earlier Monday, Regal said it was closing its 543 U.S. theaters “until further notice."

”Regal announces closure of all theater locations starting Tuesday, March 17, 2020, as a precaution amid the current circumstances," the chain tweeted.

″It’s our goal to provide a safe and healthy environment for our employees and guests," Regal said in another tweet. “We value your patronage and have no doubt we will be serving you again as soon as possible with a full slate of Hollywood blockbusters.”

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A person wears a protective mask while walking by an AMC movie theater as the coronavirus continues to spread across the United States on March 16, 2020, in New York City.
A person wears a protective mask while walking by an AMC movie theater as the coronavirus continues to spread across the United States on March 16, 2020, in New York City. (Cindy Ord/Getty Images)