AMC will not run out of cash in the near future. The cinema chain announced that it had raised or received $917 million in debt capital and equity commitments, or enough to make the recent bankruptcy "unsealable." The company says it has a lifeline "deep into 2021" or long enough that it may see a recovery as the winter COVID-19 surge fades and mass vaccinations give people a chance to safely return to theaters.
The company acknowledges that there is still a lot of uncertainty due to new coronavirus strains, such as the ones in the UK and South Africa, and other factors.
AMC has been optimistic about reopening last summer and plans to reopen two-thirds of its cinemas by September 2020. However, this did not translate into an increase in audiences - ticket sales fell 92 per cent in October and November. Moviegoers just don't want to risk their health to watch on the big screen, which doesn't help studios delay the release of plays or send subtitles directly to streaming services.
Even if the vaccine's launch helps AMC resume operations later in 2021, questions remain about whether customers will be back. Major studios are planning to release both drama and streaming movies, or in some cases only streaming. Increasing movie delays and audiences may be content to stay at home, no matter how secure access to the theater is.