Shortly after reopening, 4 Alaska movie theaters will close Thursday

The Regal Tikahtnu theater is one of four Alaska movie theaters that will close when Regal suspends U.S. operations on Thursday, Oct. 8. (Abbey Collins/Alaska Public Media)

Four Alaska movie theaters are set to close temporarily this week, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt the film industry.

There are three Regal movie theaters in Anchorage and one in Fairbanks.

On Monday, Cineworld, the parent company of Regal, announced the temporary suspension of operations at all of its U.S. theaters, as of Thursday, Oct. 8.

In a statement, Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidinger pointed to a number of pandemic challenges, including in inability to reopen in New York.

“The prolonged closures have had a detrimental impact on the release slate for the rest of the year, and, in turn, our ability to supply our customers with the lineup of blockbusters they’ve come to expect from us,” said Greidinger. “As such, it is simply impossible to continue operations in our primary markets.”

Movie theaters reopened in Anchorage in September after months of pandemic-related closures. In Fairbanks, the theater reopened at the end of August. Regal implemented procedures aimed at preventing the spread of the virus.

The company points to challenges within the industry and the continued closure of important markets due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Regal said the theater closures are expected to impact around 40,000 employees throughout the country. It’s unclear how many employees the company has in Alaska.

The three theaters affected in Anchorage are Tikahtnu, Dimond Center and Totem. In Fairbanks, Regal Goldstream is affected.

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