Vaccinations and summertime getting movie theater industry back on track

Local News

ENTERPRISE, Ala. (WDHN)— Movie theaters across the Wiregrass and the country have taken a major hit due to the pandemic. But now that summer is approaching, the industry could be on the rebound.

Popcorn, drinks, snacks— all the movie theatre essentials that the pandemic put a stop to. At Clark Cinemas, President Mack Clark explained how difficult it was just staying afloat at the beginning of the pandemic.

“Of course when COVID first started it was dead,” Clark said. “We closed on March the 18th I believe and we reopened on June 4th and it was slow but it has gained momentum.”

That same momentum is bringing in frequent customers, like Dan Campbell, back to Clark Cinema.

“We’re happy about that and we also got our shots and we just felt like it’s time,” Campbell said. “We’re probably okay now and that we’ll just come back.”

While the theater has made changes, vaccinations and summertime is turning the industry around for the better. Although the theater is operating a half capacity, that isn’t stopping customers from coming in.

Plus, with new movies like “Godzilla vs Kong,” showings have been packed.

“The only thing I can attribute that too is the mask mandate was up,” Clark said.

Clark Cinema requires its employees to wear face coverings, but leaves it as a choice for guests. However, the theater encourages guests to continue taking precautions like using hand sanitizer and maintaining social distancing.

“A theatre is just a building without a movie and we’re starting to get movies and there’s gonna be a lot of titles this summer and I think that is going to be a big boost for the industry.”

Many residents are just eager for the summer for new movies.

“We’re ready to go.”

As vaccinations become eligible, movie officials hope they’ll only experience a pandemic on the big screen.

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