NewsCovering Kern County


Local theaters set to reopen on Friday, what you can expect

Posted at 8:07 AM, Oct 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-16 14:50:04-04

To some, this pandemic may have felt like a post-apocalyptic motion picture including for theaters who have had to close their doors to customers in March and then again in June. Now that Kern is in the red tier, local theaters are rolling out the red carpet for reopening.

On Friday, Maya Cinemas is opening its doors to the public for the first time in months. General Manager Ashley Cantu explains how the pandemic has affected business and what their expectations are for the coming weeks.

Local movie theaters set to reopen
Local movie theaters set to reopen

But how are thousands of film buffs in Kern County are going to be accommodated when the capacity and showtimes are less than usual? Thankfully Maya Cinemas is not the only theater opening back up this weekend!

Reading Cinemas, which closed for the first time on March 17, is also opening their doors Friday to moviegoers. They will also open at 25 percent capacity as well, so no more than 100 people. General Manager Jenny Sullivan said they let go of all of their employees but will welcome some of them back depending on the revenue.

Reading Cinemas at Valley Plaza will also be offering an array of flashback favorites, returning to the big screen at a special rate of $5 for adults and $3 for children. Films include Coco, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, The Lost Boys and William Friedkin’s The Exorcist: Extended Director’s Cut.

In addition to new releases, Reading Cinemas will now offer a variety of private cinema options for guests.

VIP screenings, allowing groups of up to 30 to enjoy a private screening, and select their movie from the list of over 100 options! Film categories include Fast & Furious Saga, Family, Horror Hits, Wizarding World, Girls Night Out, Comedic Gems, Hitchcocktober and more.

Private Rental Events, in which groups of up to 10 can provide their own content via Blu-Ray, streaming device, or even gaming console, and make their own VIP Event.

The Studio Movie Grill will host a welcome back curbside event on Saturday. They said they’ll be giving away free passes and family popcorn, ahead of opening back up Sunday at noon. Face masks will be required as well as health guidelines of state and local health departments.

Not all movie theaters have happy endings though. AMC Theaters around the country did announce that they may run out of cash by the end of the year. But as per their website, AMC Bakersfield 6 will also be opening up today at 40 percent capacity or less.