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Regal Cinemas to reopen US theaters in early April

Regal Cinemas will kick off a phased reopening in the U.S. with a limited number of theaters opening for "Godzilla vs. Kong" on April 2.

WASHINGTON — For the first time in about six months, Regal Cinemas will be reopening its theaters to the public in April, according to an announcement from its parent company, Cineworld Group.

In an announcement on Tuesday, Cineworld Group said the phased reopening will kick off with a limited number of theaters opening for "Godzilla vs. Kong" on April 2 and going wider with "Mortal Kombat" on April 16.

Movie theaters all over the United States were impacted over the past year as the coronavirus pandemic swept the globe.

"We have long-awaited this moment when we can welcome audiences back to our Regal theatres and restore our essential role within the communities we serve," said Mooky Greidinger, Chief Executive Officer of Cineworld, in a statement. 

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He added: "With the health and safety of our customers, staff, and communities as our top priority, we continue to take all the necessary precautions and abide by our CinemaSafe guidelines to confidently provide a safe and comfortable experience. With capacity restrictions expanding to 50% or more across most U.S. states, we will be able to operate profitably in our biggest markets."

As of the end of September, Regal Cinemas had 536 theatres in 42 states along with the District of Columbia and Guam.

Credit: Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
The Regal Cinemas L.A. Live Stadium 14 is pictured, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Cineworld added that it plans to reopen its U.K. locations in May, once the government guidance allows it.

On top of reopening U.S. theaters, Cineworld also reached a multi-year agreement with Warner Bros. Cineworld said starting in 2022, Warner Bros. Pictures Group movie releases will have a 45-day window of theatrical exclusivity, with certain provisions.

"We are very happy for the agreement with Warner Bros. This agreement shows the studio's commitment to the theatrical business and we see this agreement as an important milestone in our 100-year relationship with Warner Bros." Greidinger added. 

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Last week, AMC Theatres opened 98% of its U.S. movie theaters, with even more theaters are expected to open by March 26.