Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas Set To Reopen in Dallas-Fort Worth

Five Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas closed down in Dallas-Fort Worth in recent weeks when a franchisee filed for bankruptcy. Then came the stunning news that Sony Pictures Entertainment had acquired the Austin-based company. Now—two weeks later—there's good news for local moviegoers.

Well, that didn’t take long—and the movies will start rolling again soon. (Though they don’t actually roll anymore, do they?)

In the last couple of weeks, North Texas moviegoers were saddened when the franchise group Two is One, One is None filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and closed down five local Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas in the Dallas neighborhoods of The Cedars and Lake Highlands; Richardson; Las Colinas in Irving; and Denton. 

Less than a week later, Sony Pictures Entertainment rocked Hollywood by announcing it had acquired Austin-based Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and its 35 locations in 25 metro areas, as well as its much-loved Fantastic Fest film festival.

Then came yesterday evening and some good-news whiplash: Alamo Drafthouse announced that it will soon be reopening all five theaters in the Dallas-Fort Worth area (and one more in Minnesota’s Twin Cities that had also been shut down by the franchise group).

All six of those locations will now be owned and operated directly by Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. The company added that all affected venue staff “will be made whole for lost wages that they were owed prior to the closures.” The news comes as Alamo Drafthouse has seen renewed box office momentum this summer by showing the movies “Bad Boys: Ride or Die,” “The Bikeriders,” and “Inside Out 2.” 

“We were heartbroken to hear about the franchisee’s decision to close their locations in Dallas-Fort Worth and Woodbury, MN, but we immediately got to work to acquire these as Alamo Drafthouse owned locations,” Alamo Drafthouse CEO Michael Kustermann said in a statement. “We’re so excited to reestablish Alamo Drafthouse Cinema for our teammates and local film communities in these great cities during an incredibly successful summer of moviegoing.” 

The company said past employees will get first access to interviews for open positions at the theaters, and that those who are rehired will receive a more robust benefits plan with immediate eligibility, including access to daily pay, substantial 401k match, paid medical leave, accrued PTO, free mental health services.

Soft reopenings planned

Alamo Drafthouse said it will host a “soft opening” during the first week of each location’s reopening, with promotions and discounts to be announced. Anyone who’s owed ticket refunds due to the sudden closings by the previous owners will receive free ticket vouchers, and guests who previously purchased Alamo Drafthouse’s “Inside Out 2” lunch box and “Deadpool and Wolverine” pint glass will receive these items upon reopening.

Lastly, members of Alamo Drafthouse’s Season Pass subscription service will get a free month of service when their accounts are reactivated.

Now managed within a new Sony division

Alamo Drafthouse is now being managed within Sony Pictures Entertainment under a newly established division, Sony Pictures Experiences, headed by Alamo Drafthouse’s CEO Michael Kustermann under the leadership of Ravi Ahuja, President and COO of SPE.

Alamo Drafthouse will continue to operate all 41 of its cinemas across 25 metro areas under the Alamo Drafthouse brand, and the Austin-based team will continue operate the Fantastic Fest film festival.

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R E A D   N E X T

  • Moviegoers in Dallas-Fort Worth have had their cinema-loving dreams dashed—and raised again—in the space of a week. First came word that Angelika Film Center & Cafe Plano was closing, followed by news that the franchise group running five Dallas-Fort Worth Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas had closed them down and filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The raised hopes? That came Wednesday, when Sony Pictures Entertainment rocked Hollywood by announcing it had acquired Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and its 35 locations in 25 metro areas, as well as its much-loved Fantastic Fest film festival.

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