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Alamo theaters to reopen with coronavirus measures

Shawn M. Carter

When Alamo Drafthouse starts reopening theaters in early July, its venues will be “safer than a supermarket” thanks to the rollout of new coronavirus cleaning measures, the company said.

“We’re revising and reimagining how we do things,” CEO Tim League said in a statement. “That’s no small task — it means flexing a model we’ve refined for over twenty years — and we know we’ll need to stay nimble as we learn new and better methods, continuously gather feedback from our guests, and as the battle against COVID-19 continues.”

The theater chain, which operates 41 locations in 10 U.S. states, said that along with enhanced cleaning, it will implement protocols including social distancing. Moviegoers will be required to buy tickets online and maintain at least two seats’ distance from the next guest.

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Moviegoers will also be asked to wear a mask at all times, except for when they are eating or drinking, a move competitors like AMC have also announced. Workers will also wear masks, gloves and regularly sanitize, and the chain will provide face covers to those who need one.

Not unlike other businesses operating in the pandemic, Alamo will require employees to undergo temperature checks before work and offer temperature checks to guests who present persistent symptoms like coughing. Anyone with a fever will be refunded and asked to leave.

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“We want you to feel safe. Our driving principle has been to make the Alamo experience one of the safest possible indoor activities — 'safer than a supermarket' — and far exceed the expectations you already have for supermarkets, gyms, and restaurants,” League said.

Theater reopenings come at a time when many, like AMC are struggling to stay afloat. Cinemas worldwide have been shuttered since mid-March with pictures like "Top Gun: Maverick", James Bond "No Time To Die" and Walt Disney's "Mulan" have been pushed later into the year.

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