Inside Laemmle Theatres’ Struggle to Survive Despite LA’s ‘Stupid’ COVID Rules

Diane Haithman
·1-min read

Greg Laemmle, who runs L.A.-based Laemmle Theatres art-house movie chain with his father, Robert, was on the fast track to expand the family business in early 2020, determined to recover from a reported 30% drop in revenue in early 2019 that raised the possibility the chain would be sold. Then the pandemic hit. Now the company is still in shutdown mode with its seven theaters and 41 screens, including a new seven-screen complex in Newhall that has yet to open to the public. The cause? What Laemmle calls “stupid” L.A. County COVID-19 protocols that do not allow outdoor movie screenings, even at limited capacity, while restaurants are allowed that privilege. “It gets a little frustrating when you think someone can go to a place, sit outdoors and watch a football game on a big screen, but then that same facility can’t put a big screen up and start showing movies,” he told TheWrap, noting the protocols he and other exhibitors have taken to ensure the safety of moviegoers. That contradiction has hurt the Southern California chain, founded by Kurt and Max Laemmle, nephews of legendary Universal Pictures founder Carl Laemmle, who opened their first Culver City theater in 1938. The...

Read original story Inside Laemmle Theatres’ Struggle to Survive Despite LA’s ‘Stupid’ COVID Rules At TheWrap