AMC Wipes Out its Meme Stock Groupies, Shares Plunge to New All-Time Low

It’s hard to manipulate up a stock via even the best meme-stock tactics when a company sells hundreds of millions more shares into every rally.

By Wolf Richter for WOLF STREET.

We’re keeping an eye on our favorite meme stocks here. Today’s special is AMC Entertainment Holdings [AMC]. Since 2020, the company raised cash by selling shares to the meme-stock crowd in various share offerings that caused me to note in August 2021 that it had sold more shares than theater tickets. Since the Good Times in 2019, AMC quadrupled its share count but then could issue no more shares without shareholder approval, which shareholders turned down. In August 2022, AMC then came up with the ruse of the APEs (AMC Preferred Equity units) as a back door to issuing more shares without shareholder approval. And it worked.

Last Thursday, after it settled the legal fight with stockholders, AMC completed the 10-to-1 reverse stock split, where 10 shares became 1 share, and the price of the shares briefly spiked by 10x as a direct result of the reverse stock split, before further collapsing as there was suddenly a lot more room underneath to collapse into. Then on Friday, AMC converted the APEs into Class A common stock. All of this now allows AMC to sell about 390 million in new common shares to raise even more cash: about $4.3 billion at today’s share price, promising vastly more dilution to existing shareholders. By comparison, market cap is down to $1.8 billion.

While all this fun was going on, over the past two weeks, shares have collapsed from the already collapsed levels by another 75% to an all-time low of $11.55 at the moment (Monday early afternoon), which would translate into a pre-reverse-stock-split price of $1.15. Stock prices in this chart are adjusted for the 10-1 reverse stock split (data via YCharts):

It’s just hard to manipulate up the share price via even the best meme-stock tactics when a company uses every little rally to sell hundreds of millions more shares into the market.

Chinese conglomerate Wanda, which had acquired AMC in 2012, spun off a stake via IPO in August 2013, at the IPO price of $18 a share, now $180 adjusted for the reverse stock split. Wanda then started selling off the remaining pieces of its stake in various increments, some at huge losses but was also able to sell some portions to the meme-stock crowd at big gains during the run-ups. By May 2021, it was out of it.

The chart below shows the stock since the IPO, adjusted for the 10-1 reverse stock split. Since the IPO price, shares have collapsed by 94%. Since the intra-day meme-stock-idiocy peak on February 6, 2021, of $726 (pre-reverse stock split of $72.62), the shares have collapsed by 98%. This makes AMC a prominent hero in my pantheon of Imploded Stocks.

So against the grand collapse off the meme-stock idiocy, the 75% plunge over the past two weeks is barely visible (data via YCharts):

Even during the Good Times in 2019, shares had already collapsed by about 80% from the IPO price. The brick-and-mortar movie business has long been under attack from various technologies that allowed people to watch movies on high-definition screens at home.

AMC lost money even before the pandemic. In 2019, the Good Times, it booked an annual net loss of $149 million. Since then, it booked $7 billion in net losses. In Q2 this year, it made its first quarterly profit in years, of a minuscule $9 million. But it had $31 million in one-time items, including $21.6 million in gains on debt extinguishment. So it reported an “adjusted” net loss of $7 million. And it still had a negative free cash flow of $62 million.

And it has $10 billion in short-term and long-term debt, while the market capitalization of its shares has plunged to just $1.8 billion, and its book value, or shareholder equity (assets minus liabilities), has plunged to a negative $2.6 billion in Q2. Interest expense now exceeds $100 million a quarter.

By selling more shares, the company hopes to feed its negative cash flow and to pay down its pile of debt.

Cineworld, owner of Regal Theaters in the US – the second-largest chain behind AMC – filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US in September 2022 and emerged from bankruptcy earlier this month.

Anyone out there thinking about AMC shares should ask themselves: Why should they bail out the creditors of this company – those that hold the $10 billion in debt and other creditors – after the company has crushed and nearly wiped out its stockholders by hook or crook for years.

If investors refuse to play this game, and refuse to buy the shares that AMC wants to sell to raise cash and pay its executives the big stock-based compensation packages, well then, it cannot raise enough cash, and may have to file for bankruptcy, which would finally put an end to these games and turn over ownership of the company to the creditors under the supervision of the court. And it could emerge with a different set of shareholders (the existing ones having gotten wiped out) and with a lot less debt, and then it might have a chance to eke out an existence in what is a brutally challenging environment for brick-and-mortar theaters.

Enjoy reading WOLF STREET and want to support it? You can donate. I appreciate it immensely. Click on the beer and iced-tea mug to find out how:

Would you like to be notified via email when WOLF STREET publishes a new article? Sign up here.

  89 comments for “AMC Wipes Out its Meme Stock Groupies, Shares Plunge to New All-Time Low

  1. Green Bay says:

    Wolf, you’ve got typos of “reserve, reverse” in here. You can delete my message.
    “reserve stock split, where 10 shares became 1 share, and the price of the shares briefly spiked by 10x as a direct result of the reverse stock split, “

    • Wolf Richter says:

      🤣😍 “reserve stock split” works amazingly well. Thanks!

      • Kenneth M Luskin says:

        My take:
        There is high probability that AMC will have to reverse split its stock again and again
        = AMC has a reserve of reverse stock splits

        • The Real Tony says:

          Absolutely and with zero birthrate around the world in time they’ll be no more teenagers to go to the movies. I made a lot of money shorting Cineplex Corporation up in Canada. I also shorted the stock the day it first listed on the TSE at 5 dollars a share as I knew that company inside-out or better than inside-out before they even listed on the Toronto stock exchange.

    • Brian E taylor says:

      I didn’t see one comment about how shorts are not covering there bet. Ftd into the billions. No chance of a comment about how the short sellers can’t close there positions because there’s no shares to have. No mention of how the shorts can’t even find shares to pay the dividend. This is a lot of fud and nobody is wiped out if there not selling. This is just short sellers selling to each other driving price down

      • Wolf Richter says:

        Sorry for your losses, Thoughts and prayers?

        AMC is going to triple its share count going forward, and you’re worried about the shorts not being able to cover? 🤣 AMC will sell waves and waves of shares into every rally, supplying the shorts and everyone else with millions of shares.


        Dividend payment date was today, btw.

        Sure there will be a bounce. While it might be big in percentage terms, it will hardly show up on chart #2. Every single bounce since the ridiculous peak got totally crushed and annihilated. And that’s not going to change.

        That said, I think it’s nuts to short a stock like this because of the risks involved. But that’s just me.

        • Jayson says:

          Ii don’t think they go bankrupt but may get back to “pre-meme” and pre-pandemic levels at some point if debt gets paid etc….

      • John H. says:


        Point 1- “There’s no they’re there.” (The right words add to readability.)

        Point 2- My dad always said: “Money has a way of returning to its rightful owner.” Good luck on the “investments.”

  2. Depth Charge says:

    Where are your “diamond hands” now, bidge?

  3. Paul says:

    A game in which the only way to win is to not play.

    • Cas127 says:


    • phleep says:

      I very, very briefly held some APEs. I don’t know what I was thinking, other than it was a fun corporate finance/legal technicality to watch and speculate a little bit on, but the bet size was microscopic, and I recovered my senses and got out.

  4. WB says:

    Stupid is as stupid does.

    Hey Wolf, any data on the current state of bankruptcy filings, both corporate and private?

    • Wolf Richter says:

      1. Corporate filings are running a tad higher than the Easy Money normal before the pandemic, up from the free-money lows in 2021 and 2022.

      2. I discussed consumer bankruptcy filings here:

      In Q2, the number of consumers with bankruptcies inched up a tad to 114,000 consumers, still down by about 40% from the Good Times average of 2017-2019 of around 200,000, and down by 80% from the Good Times average in 2004-2005:

      • phleep says:

        There is lots of corporate action out there, with pharma firms trying to wriggle out of opiate liabilities. There are some very exotic structures being tried.

      • WB says:

        Thanks Wolf! “Greatest eCONomy ever!”

        I read somewhere that Blackrock now manages/controls more wealth/assets than the GDP of most countries in the world, but hey, what could possibly go wrong with such concentrations of money/wealth?

        • Wolf Richter says:

          Jeeesus. You’re reading too much financial fiction BS, and you’re abusing my site to spread this fiction BS. People like you and me have money in funds (including stock funds, bond funds, money market funds, etc.) that BlackRock manages. BlackRock doesn’t control your or my assets. We do. We can take our assets out of a BlackRock fund and put it into a Fidelity fund or blow them on a boat, for example. BlackRock provides a service to us, and we pay it a fee if we want to use the service. BlackRock manages assets for a fee, and people pay it this fee to manage their assets. Those are NOT BlackRock’s assets. That wealth is not “concentrated” at BlackRock, that wealth is spread among hundreds of millions of people. That’s how that works.

      • Burton says:

        Are you forgetting the fact that they’ve had the biggest box office gross in the history of the company in August?

        What about that once they release the shares, they’re out of debt. Adding value to the company?

        This stock is near all time lows while box office is near all time highs.

        • Wolf Richter says:

          1. who cares about one month? You? Certainly not the stock market.

          2. Whether or not they will be out of debt depends entirely on the stock price they get when they sell the shares. And they would have to triple their share count. So existing shareholders get diluted to smithereens.

          3. If you think that AMC is a great buy, load up on it. Don’t argue with me about it. That is not what this forum is for.

  5. Kenneth M Luskin says:

    AMC is a version of what happened to drive-in theaters and Blockbuster
    = Most of them will go bye, bye
    And the ones that remain will struggle to survive

    • The Real Tony says:

      The homeless and the bums on the street have gotten a lot poorer. The days of someone buying a movie ticket to spend the entire day watching movies ended a long time ago. Now they’re on the streets and in the parks not asleep all day in the movie theaters.

  6. Beg4mercy says:

    Perpetual motion machine fueled by parasitic waste. This is an excellent model for the pandemic bubble and what needs to unfold immediately.

    • phleep says:

      AMC was betting the drooling fanboys would stay dumb enough, long enough, to keep buying and get it aloft, despite its weird gimmicky management moves, and the larger trends in the business that can’t be ignored. It is a microcosm of the mall mess.

  7. Timothy J McLean says:

    As most investors, who follow Wolf, know, fundamentals eventually matter. All the free money printing just distorted the markets. As usual, the inexperienced retail traders suck up all the losses.

    • Carlos says:

      They are in real trouble. Looking at the Cash Flow and Balance Sheets, AMC has about 1-2 years left before it is bankrupt, unless they can pull off a miracle.

      They got a nice windfall with all the stock issuance thanks to the meme bros, which was over $1.2 billion. But they are now burning between $60M-100M per quarter, with only $460M cash left as of end of Q2.

      Market cap is $1.8B, and they have $2.5B in debt, putting them deep in the hole.

      With the WGA/SAG strikes killing the pipeline for movies that would otherwise be released a year from now, this could happen a lot quicker.

      • Apple says:

        The effect of the strike will have a more immediate effect. 4th quarter movies are already sliding to 2024.

        Dune was just moved to March 2024. Challengers moved to April 2024. Ghostbusters is now opening sometime in 2024.

      • Burton says:

        No the strikes are not. Look at the list of Production Companies who have decided to pay the asking rate the union seeks to be universal. EVERY major studio is in production. Perhaps some network TV shows are not working, but the movie business is alive and well. There are over 100 Movies in Production right now.

        Perhaps the miracle you’re speaking about is that August 2023 just became the biggest month of revenue in the history of the company. The box office is pumping.

        I think perhaps you may want to fact check before reading headlines and assuming you understand the situation.

        Stock ALL – TIME LOW

        We have a miracle…

        • Wolf Richter says:

          No one other than you cares about 1 month. As you can tell from the stock. Everyone knows, there won’t be repeat months, not 12, not even 1, maybe not for many years.

    • Carlos says:

      (typo above) They actually have over $11B in debt. Meant to say $2.5B in negative equity (assets minus liabilities)

      • Cas127 says:

        And that asset total probably deserves scrutiny…if it includes theater real estate, it is worth asking who exactly would buy it if AMC could not use it profitably.

        Some historical valuation (or AMC guesstimate) renders that asset valuation theoretical…whereas *all* liabilities are held by some third party that wants 100% of its damn money back (with interest).

        In other words, asset values are often very theoretical…but liabilities are very real.

  8. Thomas Curtis says:

    That is funny and sad but pain is the greatest teacher.

    Couldnt get any shares of Vinfast to short. Should have been looking at this and all of the memes I guess. Daily…

  9. Phoenix_Ikki says:

    It’s almost funny if it isn’t so F up but in every one of these meme stock examples, people at the top cashed out in spectacular fashion…apparently fool me once..shame on me, fool me twice….etc is not really a thing in this FOMO driven society…

  10. Paul Lloyd says:

    Lots of important facts omitted there, wolf buddy.
    You are giving the impression that this is a normal decline due to poor fundamentals.
    More than 200x the number of FTDs each week than Apple.
    Cost to borrow average 500-1000%
    Days to cover -60
    Short interest 30-40%
    Price down 75% in 4 days last week despite no one selling apart from market makers selling naked shares
    Yes, this will be the Mother Of All Short Squeezes and will coincide with an almighty bear market for the blue chips

    • Wolf Richter says:

      Sorry for your losses, Thoughts and prayers?

      Sure there will be a bounce. While it might be big in percentage terms, it will hardly show up on chart #2. Every single bounce since the ridiculous peak got totally crushed and annihilated. And that’s not going to change.

      And with AMC now able to something like triple its share count going forward, selling waves and waves of new shares into every rally and into every sag, there will be plenty of shares available for the shorts to cover their bets with.


      • Paul Lloyd says:

        But you didn’t respond to any of my observations.
        Here’s another one;
        On balance Volume has only increased over the period from $72 to date.

        • Wolf Richter says:

          LOL. I did respond to them, you just didn’t get it.

          AMC fell again today. Closed at $10.91. Sorry for your losses. Thoughts and prayers.

        • Paul Lloyd says:

          Here’s another observation for you to (not) address;
          Day 46 on the RegSHO Threshold List.
          AMC has been on this for about 80 days this year.
          Care to speculate why?

        • Wolf Richter says:

          So what? WeWork has been on that list, and it’s a penny stock (12 cents). That’s the fate of AMC unless it can sell a lot of shares really quickly while its shares are still worth anything. Do you think that being on the list for a long time caused WeWork to spike into “the mother of all short-squeezes,” as you so aptly put it? Well, it’s at $0.12 right now, so that’s the answer to that one.

          Eventually, AMC is going to have some kind of bounce, for sure, but it too will get crushed.

          The dynamics of these big reverse stock splits are really shitty. You need to look at other stocks that went through them. They doom existing investors.

      • Paul Lloyd says:

        I don’t know which would be worse; that you don’t appreciate the crime that is being committed to illegally short AMC, or that you do and that you are trying to gaslight your readers.

        • Wolf Richter says:

          Look, you make your investment choices and you live with them. Naked shorting isn’t new. Been around for eons. You should have known that shorts — naked and otherwise — will be all over a company that gets in serious trouble, such as AMC, that is fooling and screwing its stockholders in order to stay out of bankruptcy court. I get why they’re doing all these things. But it’s just fodder for the shorts. And you should have known that if you go long something like that. If you bet on a short squeeze to get rich quick, sometimes you get rich quick, and other times you get wiped out. It’s not the market’s job to give you what you want. You might still get a short squeeze, and you might not, or it not be enough to get you excited. AMC is going to issue lots of new shares, maybe tripling its share count over time, and it will sell those shares into every rally. Its survival depends on it. They don’t care about you. All they care about now is staying out of bankruptcy court.

    • WaterDog says:

      The stock price is $11.16

      EPS -$5.7246

      I don’t need to pay a CEO $24 million to waste my money… my kids do that for free.

  11. Einhal says:

    The funny thing is I heard people claiming that the Barbie and Oppenheimer films’ success were proof that AMC/Regal could survive. LOL.

    While I do concede that a lot of people still like seeing movies in theaters, a growing number don’t. First, large flat screens and good sound systems have made it that you can have a much better experience at home than you could even 15 years ago.

    Second, the food options at most theaters are disgusting, unhealthy, and overpriced. I might be willing to pay for an overpriced turkey sandwich if I’m seeing a movie around dinner time, but I certainly don’t want an overpriced bucket of 3,000 calorie popcorn.

    Third, the behavior of other people at theaters turns me off. I don’t want to hear people giggling like hyenas, talking loudly, having their phones ring, and so forth.

    • whatever says:

      Every time I think about going to a movie theater I just think of my last experience right before Covid with people chatting openly discussing the movie like their were on their couch at home, people on their phones lighting their immediate area and so forth.

      The second thing sounds contradictory, but the noise is too dang loud in a theater and then I prefer closed captioning. The noise at “eleven” blasts me on music and FX, but not really helpful on dialog.

      I’d really like to see the second Dune move this fall but might just wait for home theater.

      • Carlos says:

        Dune is delayed to at least March 2024 due to the strikes, so we’ll be waiting plenty

      • Thomas Curtis says:

        The theaters used to ask people to be quiet and then throw them out and ban them if necessary.

        Likewise retail theft. A high school kid was expelled if caught shoplifting.

        We had far less crime 60 years ago and I think we were more civilized.

    • Z33 says:

      I recently watched a film at one of those “luxury” theaters here in central FL. Instead of touch screens at seats to both order and pay, it had a button for a person to come up and verbally take order and then swipe credit card (or cash). It wasn’t even a huge theater, but given all the people there are basically obese and kept ordering and asking for popcorn refills it was non-stop traffic of these employees walking in and out of the theater across my row and the door slamming noise constantly. Never going there again…could barely focus on the film (it’s not AMC btw).

      I only prefer going to City Walk Orlando for films so I can get some nice desserts before or after the movie (Toothsome, Voodoo, Cinnabon) that is too difficult to get for that alone given parking, walking, and security time at Universal. The lone Imax (real screen like 50+ ft tall) in town is too outdated to bother anymore. Last time I was there for Top Gun 2 the seats were still original and torn up and worn down.

      • Einhal says:

        Was this the IMAX one in Davenport? One of my friends was talking about it.

        City Walk is awesome, but not worth the $25 or $30 to park or whatever it is, although the VooDoo donuts are incredible.

        When I used to go, we would stay at a Hilton or Marriott near the entrance and walk in.

        • Z33 says:

          Nah, Pointe Orlando Imax on I-drive. Sad, really. So many empty stores there in that shopping center and I liked that legit Imax 50 foot tall screen for many years (especially when Imax did 3D movies) and I prefer Imax for the audio that is unmatched imo. City Walk/Universal Studios parking is free with 2 matinee tickets during day and free for anyone after 6PM. Voodoo line is insane basically all the time haha…without those places for food/desserts I wouldn’t go to the movies for sure. AMC at Disney Springs is surviving probably only due to the rest of the shops that are high demand (good food at The Polite Pig imo).

      • phleep says:

        > “all the people there are basically obese and kept ordering and asking for popcorn refills”

        And you know what? When the economy turns down, with their mismanaged finances, they will be coming at us with their hands out, for a handout.

    • Shiloh1 says:

      They would be better off showing The Rocky Horror Picture Show each night.

    • MM says:

      “First, large flat screens and good sound systems have made it that you can have a much better experience at home than you could even 15 years ago.”

      They’ve also come down a lot in price. You can get a large, flat-screen TV and surround-sound system for under $1000 these days.

  12. SpencerG says:

    Gotta give management credit for seizing the brass ring when it is offered to them. But if they aren’t wiping out their debt with this ill-gotten windfall then shame on them.

  13. William Leake says:

    Any action as a result of stock splits is just plain stupid. Splits are just mathematics, nothing more. As for theatres, they are dead. Covid and streaming hit them hard, and lousy new pictures put the final nail in them.

    • Streaming won’t be as much of a competitor once the prices skyrocket here soon…

      • CSH says:

        Yeah I actually believe the theater experience will make a comeback some day, but probably not in the form of these giant chains like AMC.

    • Mark Sudduth says:

      I’ve been a Projection & Sound Technician in the motion picture exhibition industry for 49 years. I’ve worked and seen it all. I agree, the industry as the masses have come to know it, is in a sharp decline and will likely fade rapidly over the next few years. Considering how low it’s fallen since my first year “in the business”, I won’t shed a single tear at the loss. The “Spirit of Showmanship” has been long deceased. The theatre chains have abdicated their responsibilities and turned over the auditoriums to the sloven and unruly moviegoing public that has transformed the theatre experience into an unpleasant and filthy fiasco. The production companies make movies that appeal only to sophmoric fantasy driven viewers who desperately seek sensory stimulation over any kind of mental or emotionally challenging film.

      • 91B20 1stCav (AUS) says:

        Mark S. – the plethora of races to the bottom…
        (…however, the rise of ‘entertainment’ to the level of a major industry among them begs some serious thought…).

        may we all find a better day.

  14. Steve says:

    A stock chart titled “idiocy, lunacy, greed and mania”? or maybe pandemic lockdown movie mania? or how to take the money and run…look at that upside chart and look at its equal greater downside. Thats called equilibrium taking over. Now look at the upside chart of housing bubble 2. Consider its equilibrium. Repeat while looking…no idiocy, lunacy, greed or mania here. This time is different. Denial is unacceptable. Its worth remembering, imho, some of the biggest money rakes in by creating/riding these implosions down. Some of the very biggest money. That same biggest money is eyeing real estate, like in 2008 to make another chart like AMC. This is called wealth transfer and its Wall Streets specialized game. They have an ace up their sleeve to guarantee the win. The ace of Powell. Your money to them is the only rule. The game has a name. Its name is inflation but its action is wealth transfer(or vice versa if you like). They are very good at it. Masters. The grandmasters of wealth transfer. Perpetually undefeated.

  15. Olivier says:

    You don’t know the size of the individual position of these “meme” buyers. Before you call them stupid retail buyers or something equally nice perhaps you should ask yourself whether you might be discounting the LOL aspect.

    Also, as a speculation, it worked remarkably well at the top. According to that chart when the stock started rising in December 2020 you had several months to make your play and then again a couple of months to exit. Not bad.

  16. Catxman says:

    The final evolution of the movie will be the hologram.

    Imagine this: you have a 15 foot by 15 foot circle, with sides one foot off the ground for the electronics. Then you hit play. Immediately two men show up in the circle: Julius Caesar and Brutus. Caesar is based on busts of him that were made during his lifetime. Brutus is a composite image.

    Brutus moves toward Caesar with the knife . . . he stands 6’1″ in the hologram, a little taller than Caesar. You walk around the circle. Now you can see the backs of the men, crisp and real as life.

    2-Dimensional Movies will be consigned to the dustbin of history, except for favorites like Star Wars, which will quickly be hologrammized for 3 dimensions. The End.

  17. djreef says:

    It’s the end of an era.

  18. Allan Barr says:

    I tried shorting AMC and other stocks, not a good game to play as a retail investor. I did come out more or maybe a little less whole than I started, fortunately I got heavy long into Tesla way back when so overall massive gains before I sold. Being short they game you with high carry costs, short shares even become unavailable and then the inevitable short squeeze game to squeeze you out. My recommendation to most investors is play the long game, get out when you feel its right.

    • Stegelberg says:

      Good advice, thought I knew the risk, had a great last year, but feeling the squeeze now and most gains gone.
      As a person that has made money on all kind of gambling; this game is rigged more than any bookie or casino – at least there the rules are simple and you know the odds, most of the time.

      Thinking about Martingaling my shorts for one big win, or going over to puts to survive longer. Cardinal sin of poker is to become pot comitted, but have to bet against this Mother of all bluffs.

      Way I see it, if they keep plundering, society will unravel and I will not have lost anything other than paper.

      And don’t use gearing on shorts, the house will clean you out.

  19. SoCalBeachDude says:

    AMC is just another worthless stock that has been absolutely worthless and insolvent for many years.

  20. Beg4mercy says:

    According to market gurus, we all need to be getting out of safe money market funds, because the Fed is ready to pause — and instinctively we need to embrace risk and ignore a recession. That was the story from Nuveen or whatever they call themselves.

    I think AMC is a barometer that’s telling me a storm is on the horizon and it’s pathetically stupid to ignore the dark clouds, blowing debris, lightning, thunder clouds and those large raindrops.

    Yes, at some point next year, it’s likely the Fed will pivot, but I thoroughly expect the vast majority of stocks to be pelted by hail in a serious storm— and with virtually all bonds being awful investments, money market yields and cash will be an excellent place to hide.

    Hopefully people are closely watching the five year performance values of equity indexes and bond funds, and seeing that jumping into almost any market is as stupid as buying AMC.

  21. Ed C says:

    The one near me has issues. The water fountains don’t work. The restrooms are in sad shape. Will go elsewhere to see a movie.

    • El Katz says:

      Many of the water fountains were shut off due to Covid fears. Others were shut down due to lead in the solder in the internals (courtesy of China).

      Plus: You can’t sell sugary drinks for $10 if someone can quench their thirst for free.

  22. Pancho says:

    I go to the theaters on very special occasions — AMC in particular around here — and order the overpriced, unhealthy popcorn and drinks so that I can give my young children an experience that is vanishing rapidly.

    I don’t think it will be one available to people much longer. I want my kids to be able to tell their grandkids one day “We remember movie theaters and the popcorn. Our parents took us some when we were young, before the theaters all vanished.”

    “The last one closed in the very early days of the Great Default. We didn’t exactly know what was happening at the time, but looking back on it now, wow…”

    • rojogrande says:

      That describes how I remember drive-in movies which were fading fast in the 1980s. The last one I went to I saw Days of Thunder with my girlfriend in 1990. Now the site is a Costco in Fresno. Time moves on.

    • Volvo P-1800 says:

      There’s a movie about that: The Last Picture Show (1971).

  23. Gen Z says:

    There is a thing called delisting, and apps freezing the stonk until it reaches to almost $0.00, in which the app will magically allow you to sell at a huge loss.

  24. Nick Kelly says:

    ‘Cineworld, owner of Regal Theaters in the US – the second-largest chain behind AMC – filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US in September 2022 and emerged from bankruptcy earlier this month.’

    UK based Cineworld declared BK because just before Covid hit it signed a mega deal to buy Canadian chain Cineplex. Once C hit and theaters closed CW tried to back out trying some form of ‘force majeure.’
    Unfortunately the contract, about half a foot thick, specifically
    forbade outs due to disease outbreaks. They were probably thinking about flu or something. Anyway the contact was deemed unbreakable, although CW is or was appealing.
    Cineplex has said it expects it won’t recover any of the 1.4 billion it was owed before CW went BK.

    Re: demise of the live movie theater. Barbie just hit a billion in live box office, biggest ever. Why would a guy go see this? Oh ya sorry, forgot. Anyway if this new C variant can hold off, maybe there is a future for the movie date.

  25. Juicifer says:

    Okay, I RTGDFA, Wolf, and I might still sound uniformed, but I wanna confirm something I heard on “FinTwit” about a year back that was even crazier than what you just reported, and request any comments or updates if you have them:

    What’s this about AMC, the movie theater chain…buying a GOLD MINE?

    Is that true? Did it happen? I’d heard that the mine, and Hycroft Mining, were already exploited to the limit, yet this CEO running AMC used this “genius” acquisition to hype to the Meme Fools his most recent round of print and pump last year? Anyone know anything about this weird tangent of the AMC saga?

    • Wolf Richter says:

      LOL. That was fodder for the meme-stock morons. AMC bought a stake in a tiny “gold mine” with zero revenues (where’s the gold, LOL) that had gone public via a merger with a SPAC in 2020, and that had issued a going-concern warning something like a year later. It’s a penny stock, trading for $0.33, market cap of $67 million, having collapsed by 96%. AMC paid $27 million, which is nothing for AMC that lost $7 billion, but it caused AMC’s shares to spike by 7%. CEO Adam Aron does whatever he can to fool and screw the meme-stock morons.

  26. AD says:

    Gone are the days when there was interest in going to the movie theater every other week to see the latest release. Hollywood was diligent and adept at keeping this interest going especially the 1970s through the 2000s.

    I remember waiting in a long line to see movies like The Matrix, Lord of the Rings and 300, as well as Star Trek (in 2009).

    The same enthusiasm has to be earned, which means fundamentally reinventing the entire movie theater experience to get people willing to spend at least $14 a ticket for a 2 hour entertainment event.

    That means the alternative (watching their wide screen high definition TV) is that much less of an experience even factoring in the convenience and cost savings. Tubi is free and seems to have a good lineup of movies.

  27. TEMPLE says:

    This is why I love Wall Street. Instead of saying “share amalgamation” or something equally obvious, they use “reverse split”. Seriously, that’s the type of phrasing someone with brain lock would come up with, like my ancient uncle struggling to find words, i.e., “what’s the opposite of the word ‘split’? You know, the reverse of split…”.

    Is it because it sounds more technical and fancy? Is this the same reason slices of MBSs were named “tranches”? Because that’s just the French word for slice. Did the French invent MBS slicing, or is “tranche” just a way to make it less obvious that some people were getting slices of crap and other people were getting slices of less crap*?

    *see what I did there?

    My brain melts…tranche by tranche.


  28. kramartini says:

    I am a regular movie goer who attends a show at AMC once a week on discount Tuesdays. The AMC theaters near me are always well maintained and have very comfortable reclining seats. The problem for AMC is that after my Tuesday discount, discounted gift cards bought at sams club, fandango vip points, and AMC stubs points, the cost to me for a ticket is less than 4 bucks. Maybe double that for an imax or 3d movie. Since I am taking an otherwise empty seat every penny from me is incremental revenue but they can’t be making money if all of their customers are like me.

  29. Bobber says:

    AMC should try playing $5 vendetta classics all day long. Eastwood, Bronson, Stallone, Schwarzenegger, Neeson. With Powellflation running wild for three years now, and everything at least 20% pricier, people will pay to see justice meted out.

    Or, AMC could try developing some original movies and series. For example, how about an illicit love triangle between Bernanke, Powell, and Yellen, who display an abundance of illicit lustful passion while competing for power in the arena of monetary policy. Will their triangular passions overcome individual yearnings for monetary power and legacy? Who will be ordained the king or queen of MMT? People will pay $500 to $1000 a ticket for that, after a few more years of inflation.

  30. AverageCommenter says:

    Anyone here thought of the return of adult movie theaters? People in the 60s and 70s had these until the Aids pandemic ended it. Why should Americans be limited to only watching p0rn outside of their homes on school or corporate computers or thru browsers in their 5G phones? Maybe the content being shown in the movie theaters has become obsolete. Remember, the majority of Gen X never had adult movie theaters to go to so now you have 3 generations of Americans who have never enjoyed this type of content on the big screen. And everyone has their certain type of p0rn they enjoy so a theater with 12 screens can feature all different types and it would be EZ for studios to crank out new movies almost weekly, thus keeping butts in the seats. Either we live in the land of the free or we don’t,, which is it?

    • 91B20 1stCav (AUS) says:

      Average – sounds like you have an opportunity in concert with Catx and holograms…

      may we all find a better day.

Comments are closed.