Sony Pictures is entering the movie theater business, as it was reported that Sony Pictures Entertainment acquired Alamo Drafthouse and its 35 movie theaters.

The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema chain is the seventh largest in the United States, and became famous for running a creative cocktail menu, an extensive food menu, and strict “no talking or texting” policies while you're in. inside the movie theater.

In Variety's report, it is revealed that as part of the sale, Alamo Drafthouse will continue to operate all of its existing locations, as well as the annual genre film festival Fantastic Fest im austin, texas. Michael Kustermann He will remain CEO of the company and will report to Sony Pictures President and COO, Ravi Ahuja. Company headquarters will remain in Austin. It has locations in 25 metropolitan areas.

The media company acquired Alamo Drafthouse from owners Altamont Capital Partners, Fortress Investment Group and founder Tim League. It will be managed under a newly created division, Sony Pictures Experiences..

The finanacial terms of the contract were not disclosed.

In a press release promoting the sale, the company said:

“[La adquisición] reinforces long-standing commitment [de Sony Pictures Entertainment] with theatrical exhibition and continued initiatives in experiential entertainment.”

Alamo has been quietly soliciting offers for the past few months, but had had trouble finding a buyer, Variety explained.

Tim League, founder of Alamo Drafthouse, chimed in saying:

“We are beyond excited to join forces with Sony Pictures Entertainment to expand our company's vision and make it the best cinema that has ever existed or will exist in ways we could only dream of. [Sony Pictures] “They have a deep respect and understanding of film’s ability to drive growth and create lasting cultural impact that aligns perfectly with everything Alamo Drafthouse stands for.”

Founded in 1997 by Tim League and Karrie League, Alamo Drafthouse serves more than 10 million guests annually. Affected by the pandemic, it emerged from bankruptcy in the summer of 2021. In 2023, it had a 30% increase in its box office receipts compared to the previous year.

Kustermann added:

“We were created by movie lovers for movie lovers. We know how important this is to Sony and it is further proof of their commitment to the theatrical experience. Together we will continue to innovate and provide new and exciting opportunities for both our teammates and moviegoers.”

The agreement marks a rare moment in recent history for a studio to buy a movie theater chain. It's something that became easier after the Supreme Decree, a 1948 Supreme Court antitrust decision that prevented film production companies from owning exhibition companies, was allowed to expire in 2020.

In the 1990s, Sony owned and operated the Lowes Theater chain.


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