Movie theater giant AMC Theaters is currently facing over $1.75 million in mechanics lien claims. This comes after the company reported a quarterly loss of $2.17 billion amid the coronavirus pandemic. Other theater chains, including Cinemark and Studio Movie Grill, were also subject to lien filings amid financial trouble. Studio Movie Grill alone owes at least $7.2 million since the start of 2020 through 11 different lien affidavits.
In total, at least 8 liens have been filed against AMC Theaters to date in Texas, Georgia, Washington, and Kansas.
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Lights, camera, payment disputes
Subcontractor New Generation Mechanical has filed six of their seven lien claims in Texas, with each lien affidavit affirmed on May 7th, 2020. In total, New Generation Mechanical claims they are owed approximately $22,530.23. NGM filed five of the lien claims with the Dallas County clerk’s office, with another in Tarrant County.
The largest lien claim against AMC Theaters was from Parkway Construction following a project in Austin, TX. The general contractor claims they are owed $1.7 million based on their lien affidavit that was affirmed on April 13th, 2020 with the Travis County clerk’s office.
On April 21st, Majestic Contracting Services affirmed their $1.5k mechanics lien against AMC Theaters for a project in Hiram, GA. The exact dollar amount owed to these three contractors is $1,746,913.99, based on the lien affidavits.
While AMC plans on reopening its theaters worldwide by July, there is still a cause for concern based on the company’s financial status.
On June 3rd, the New York Post reported that the company reached $941.5 million in revenue for the first quarter, mounting a loss of 22%. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, AMC Theaters was forced to shut down over 1,000 of their locations across the U.S. and Canada.
Movie theaters struggling to avoid bankruptcy
Back in April 2020, online rumors suggested that China’s Dalian Wanda Group, which purchased AMC Theaters in 2012, was planning to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. According to Deadline, the Dalian Wanda Group released a statement that month saying “recent online speculation from the media that Wanda’s AMC is filing for bankruptcy is pure rumors.”
Cinemark, a major competitor of AMC Theaters, owes $630.2k in liens to at least three different Florida contractors since April. The largest lien was filed by Raymond Construction with the Seminole County clerk’s office in the amount of $595k for a project in St. Johns, FL.
On June 3rd, Yahoo Finance reported that Cinemark’s stock, Cinemark Holdings (CNK), suffered from a quarterly loss of $0.51 per share. Since the beginning of the year, Cinemark’s shares have lost 52.9%. Following the first quarter tainted by coronavirus, Cinemark reported a loss of $59.6 million.
Theater business decimated by coronavirus shut-downs
During a first-quarter earnings conference call with a variety of publications, Cinemark’s chief executive officer, Mark Zoradi, provided a stark outlook on the industry due to COVID-19 constraints.
“The reality is, I don’t think we’re going to be able to get into a full-on rhythm again of product cycles and all that we had prior to COVID-19 until 2022,” said Zoradi. “That’s more production-related than our operation-related because as studios have had to adapt to not being able to do filming and do post-production, they’ve had to move their schedules. Therefore, we’re going to adapt as well.”