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One of the great joys of the moviegoing experience is munching on a big tub of popcorn in a darkened theater alongside your fellow audience members (soda and candies are optional, but also highly recommended).
There's nothing quite like it and while that way of life was nearly extinguished by the COVID-19 pandemic, AMC Theatres wants to make sure cinema lovers are never too far from their popcorn fix ever again. The world's largest theater chain has announced its plan "to capture a piece of the growing multi-billion dollar popcorn market" by allowing consumers to access the company's interpretation of the classic salty treat (sold by AMC for over a century now) beyond the confines of their local theater.
Starting next year, AMC will open a number of kiosks, counters, and stores specifically devoted to the sale of freshly-made popcorn "and other movie theatre treats" at select malls throughout the United States. The plan is to open 15 of these retail locations by the end of 2022 with "significantly more" planned for "2023 and beyond."
In addition, the chain is launching a takeout and home delivery service run out of nearby theaters. "In this way, consumers will be able to enjoy a slice of the AMC experience when being entertained at home," promises the official release.
And if that wasn't enough for you, AMC also has a line of "prepackaged and ready-to-pop microwaveable" popcorn set to hit supermarket and convenience store shelves around the nation. Pop Secret and Orville Redenbacher better watch their backs!
“The announcement that AMC will become a competitor in the multi-billion popcorn market is so natural and logical, one wonders why the idea has not been tried before," Adam Aron, Chairman of the Board and CEO of AMC, said in a statement. "Needless to say, AMC knows popcorn ever so well. On our busiest days, AMC Theatres currently pops in the range of 50 tons of popcorn per day. But the popularity of popcorn extends well beyond the doors of our movie theatres. With this new AMC initiative, we expect to reach entirely new segments of the U.S. population with our popular AMC Theatres Perfectly Popcorn. For AMC Entertainment, this is an opportunity to diversify our business and to create a new revenue stream for our company, all the while delighting popcorn lovers whether they are in our theatres, are on the go, or find themselves in the comfort of their own homes."
It's common knowledge that movie theaters make more money from concessions than they do from ticket sales. As such, this diversification on the part of AMC is rather smart, especially since the global health crisis showed how tenuous the theatrical industry can be. Having a popcorn side hustle would help keep profits flowing if people are ever forced into lockdown again.
“As a popcorn aficionado, I couldn’t be more excited for AMC to sell their popcorn in retail locations, kiosks and supermarkets in 2022. There are many times when I will walk into a movie theater, tell the ticket taker that I’m not there to see a movie, but merely to buy a popcorn and leave," Lee Meltzer, Director, Entertainment at Rogers and Cowan PMK told SYFY WIRE.
"I also joke with people that if you look at my credit card statement, the majority of my purchases are on popcorn and iced tea. While I love going to the movies and immersing myself in escapism for 90-140 mins, one of my favorite aspects of the experience is sitting with a tub of that perfectly popped popcorn and indulge until I see the bottom. To be able to do this now whenever I want, even in the comfort of my living room while I watch TV or work at the table is a true delight. Thank you, AMC for this fantastic initiative and you will have a very satisfied customer not only at your major multiplexes, but also with your takeaway popcorn.”