You Can Rent Your Very Own Theater for Private Showings

You+Can+Rent+Your+Very+Own+Theater+for+Private+Showings

Margaret Bingham, Writer

Even if your local movie theater is open for business, you might not want to go in, especially to see a popular show where every seat is occupied. Health experts warn that being indoors, breathing the same air as groups of people, puts you at a higher risk for contracting COVID-19, which is airborne, even if everyone wears a mask.

But if you really miss the movie theater, and can no longer stand losing the big screen experience, there is still an option. If you want, you can take a small group you know and trust, to movie theaters such as AMC, Cinemark or Alamo Drafthouse that will rent you a room for private showings.

How Do I Reserve a Theater?

To rent a theater room at AMC, you’ll need to visit “amctheaters.com/rentals” and fill out the form provided. This includes the movie you’d like to see, date, time and theater. You’ll also need to provide your email address and your name. AMC says you need to book the theater at least one week in advance.

For Cinemark, visit “cinemark.com/movies/private-watch-party” and select a location and date to see availability. Choose a time that works best for you and select the movie you’d like to show, then tap Add to Cart and Checkout.

For Alamo Drafthouse, visit “drafthouse.com/personal-theater” and select your location from the dropdown menu. Tap Check Availability, then select the movie you’d like to view and your party size. Next, enter your contact, payment card information and any special requests, then click Schedule Event.

How Many People Can I Invite?

  • AMC will allow there to be up to 20 people in the theater room.
  • Cinemark will also let there be up to 20 guests.
  • And Alamo Drafthouse will let up to 30 people at some locations; up to 10 at others.

How Much Does a Theater Cost?

If you were to go to AMC the price varies depending on which movie you choose to watch. If you were to choose an older movie the cost would be $99, whereas new movies cost $149 to $349.

For Cinemark, prices range from $99 to $149, depending on showtime, location and movie selection.

And at Alamo Drafthouse the price, no matter which movie you choose, is $163. A minimum food and drink purchase of $150 is required, however, and tickets are not included.

Renting your own anything usually isn’t cheap, but sharing the cost with others can keep the price more reasonable. Let’s say your movie costs $350 and you invite 10 people, that’s $35 per person, minus tax, for a huge screen and the freedom to laugh out loud without anyone shushing you or sticking their feet in the back of your chair. 

At the end of 2019, average movie theater ticket prices in the US were $9.00 with potentially hundreds of seats per theater. So while you may pay twice or four times what you’re used to per ticket, you get significantly more personal space, as well. 

Which Movies are Available to Watch?

You can access the list of movies available at AMC, Cinemark and Alamo Drafthouse on the websites where you reserve your theater room. The movies may vary, depending on the month or season. For example, if it was December 20th, there may be a Christmas movie, whereas, if it was late October, there would be Halloween movies.

Can I Bring My Own Food?

At AMC you can bring your own food, but you’ll have to pay a hefty $250 fee to the theater and the food can’t be anything that requires a heating element or that the theater sells. For example, you can’t bring in outside popcorn.

At Cinemark, you can, but there are some limits. You’re allowed to bring cupcakes, but not cake. It also asks that you don’t bring food, candy or beverages that are offered at its concession stand.

And at Alamo Drafthouse you can not bring your own food. You must make a minimum food and drink purchase of $150 at the theater, per group including alcoholic beverages.

Will the Movie Theater Snack Bar Be Open?

Yes, all the movie theater’s snack bars will be open, although depending on the theater you go to, the food options may be unavailable or more expensive due to COVID-19.

Are The Theaters Sanitized Between Showings?

All parts of the theater, including the seats and the railing, are thoroughly sanitized between showings, but it is always recommended you bring hand sanitizer during the pandemic.

Do I Have To Wear A Mask Inside the Theater Room?

 In all theaters you have to wear a mask, in the lobby, bathrooms, concession stands and in other public areas, however, while you are eating and drinking inside the auditorium they can be removed. 

Whether you miss the movies, or not you still have the opportunity to sit down, with buttery popcorn, and hang out in front of a giant screen, with 10 to 30 of your most trusted friends.