AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc has best month since the pandemic out-scared even Halloween

Joseph B. Hash

“The domestic industry box office for October 2021 is estimated to come in considerably higher than that of any previous month since February of 2020,” the company told investors.

Meme stock () Inc were higher in pre-market trading in the US after the cinema chain said October was its best month since the pandemic broke.

The company, while not reporting any numbers, said domestic and international revenue hit its highest level since its auditoria were closed early in 2020 in response to the pandemic.

“When the final tickets are counted for showtimes tonight, the domestic industry box office for October 2021 is estimated to come in considerably higher than that of any previous month since February of 2020,” the company told investors.

AMC Entertainment, which owns the Odeon chain in the UK, did good business with Halloween Kills, which banked some US$50.4mln of cinema ticket sales in its first weekend, according to Hollywood stats and ratings firm Comscore, beating expectations for US$35-40mln.

The latest James Bond film, No Time To Die, saw a US$54mln opening weekend at the US box office but the big draw continued to be the latest comic book movie on the slate, Venom: Let There Be Carnage.

Venom banked around US$32.5mln in its second weekend, taking the US tally for its first ten days to around US$143mln, according to Forbes, meanwhile Shang Chi, another Marvel Comics IP asset, has now reportedly passed the US$400mln marker for its cinema release (before its release for streaming on November 12).

No Time To Die’s US box office opening was described as being in the range of the last two Mission Impossible movies, and it was the fourth-best start among the Bond franchise (following Skyfall, Spectre, and Quantum of Solace – which banked US$88.3mln, US$70.4mln, and US$67.5mln respectively).

Investors who bought shares in AMC through early 2021 did so, partly, in anticipation of the reopening of cinemas following the pandemic and the resumption of what is set to be a packed release schedule, as around 24 months’ worth of schedule squeezes into the post-pandemic calendar.

Industry-watchers have keenly pointed to the dynamic changes in the industry as streaming plays an increased role, with most major Hollywood studios now either opting for either a parallel release to streaming or a significantly shorter buffer between the cinematic and the streaming release date (on average it is now close to 45 days).

Shares in AMC were up 2.2% at US$36.15 in pre-market trading; a year ago, they were trading at a bargain US$2.15.

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