[Photo by Andreas Praefcke via Wikipedia Commons]

AMC are officially announcing they are lowering the seating capacity of all of their theatres in the U.S. by 50 percent due to coronavirus.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the company along with Canadian movie giant Cineplex are making the move to promote social distancing as recommended by health authorities.

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Beyond AMC and Cineplex, Cinemark Theatres are also taking extra precautions. In an email statement, they’re confirming a number of changes to their policies.

They are intending to disinfect high-traffic areas of all theatres regularly. This will include deep cleaning entire theatres every night. They are also increasing hand sanitizer stations throughout and modifying policies on refillable concession items. The company is educating staff on COVID-19 symptoms and instructing employees to wash their hands hourly at a minimum.

AMC CEO Adam Aron tells THR the company is being proactive about allowing guests to watch movies in their theatres.

“AMC is proactively taking action to cut in half the number of tickets that we will make available at all our U.S. theatres,” says Aron. “With this action, we are facilitating the ‘social distance’ between guests who still want to see movies on a big screen.”

Currently, AMC is operating over 11,000 screens across the U.S. Similarly to others, they are placing enhanced cleaning protocols. This is including “hightouch point areas, including kiosks, counter tops, restroom areas, glass, handrails and doorknobs.”

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Cineplex also gave a statement on their new measures outlining the new cleaning protocols and communications. You can read their full statement to customers here.

“First and foremost, I want to assure our guests that we are taking all appropriate measures to ensure our venues are safe and that we have existing plans and training protocols in place to ensure they stay that way. While the Public Health Agency of Canada has assessed the current public health risk associated with coronavirus as low, we continue to monitor for developments very closely,” the statement reads.

What do you think of AMC and other theatres deciding to cut their seating capacity in half? Let us know in the comments below.

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