Movie theaters have been one of the many industries hit hard by the coronavirus. In an attempt to stay afloat, some cinemas have been offering a virtual theater experience or a popcorn delivery service. Smaller, independent movie theaters have been hit especially hard, as the owners have had to make tough decisions on whether or not it is safe to reopen now that Chicago has entered into Phase 4 of the reopening plan.
For people who have been starved for entertainment, the new phase is a welcome change, even though movie theaters do have to follow strict guidelines in order to be allowed to reopen. However, many of the cinemas aren’t showing new releases but instead will be featuring releases from earlier this year like Invisible Man or Trolls World Tour, while others are bringing back favorites like Space Jam or Batman Begins. While not every Chicago movie theater has decided to reopen, here are a few that are already open or are planning on reopening in July.
Southport Ave, Chicago, IL 60613
Starting back on July 3rd, the Music Box Theatre reopened its doors. Masks are required, and tickets must be purchased online in advance. You are also not allowed to enter the theater if you have any COVID-19 or flu-like symptoms. To help keep their patrons safe, the Music Box Theatre will be implementing the following safety procedures: No self-service stations, plexiglass dividers at all points of sale, reduced capacity (50 patrons in the main theater, and 18 patrons in the Screening Room), frequent cleaning of bathrooms and other high-touch surfaces, seats, and armrests to be cleaned between each movie showing and having social distancing guidelines implemented.
Some of the movies currently available to watch are Interstellar, Relic, and The Babadook. If you aren’t quite ready to go back to the cinema, you can watch movies at home while supporting the theater. Check out House of Hummingbird, John Lewis: Good Trouble, and others.
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Classic Cinemas is still currently closed, but they have plans to open at the end of the month, starting on July 31st. Stay tuned on their website to discover what the movie times will be, and the safety procedures will be in place when they do resume business.
540 Crescent Blvd, Glen Ellyn IL, 60137
Glen Art Theatre is open once again and is playing older movies like La La Land, Chicago, The Goonies, and Ghostbusters. The theatre is hoping to play new releases like Tenet, Mulan, and A Quiet Place Part II in the upcoming weeks and months.
On the theater’s website, there is no information on what their safety precautions are, including if a mask is required to enter the premises. Before coming to the theater, call them to see what the restrictions are and what sanitation measures they have in place.
5 S Prospect Ave, Park Ridge, IL 60068
Owner Dino Vlakahkis reported that he had hoped to reopen the theatre on July 11th, but as of now, the doors are still closed. They are now aiming to be open by July 24th, in time for the opening weekend of Mulan.
One thing that is pushing the opening day back is that the 50-person limit will make it difficult for the Pickwick Theatre, which can seat 900 people in the theatre. Vlakahkis hopes that these restrictions can be less strict to allow Pickwick Theatre to practice social distancing, but still have more patrons in the building.
Currently, Pickwick’s page doesn’t have any upcoming showtimes or any guidelines.
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Featured Image Credit: Classic Cinemas Facebook Page