Resurgent Cineplex Eyeing AMC Forum 22 Theaters
MONTREAL, CANADA — Cineplex Galaxy Theatres LP (formerly Cineplex Odeon), owner of several Montreal area cinema complexes, plans to open a 16-screen theater and is eyeing the AMC 22 theaters at the Pepsi Forum (formerly the NHL home of the Montreal Canadiens), according to this report in the Montreal Gazette.
Cineplex is also lowering ticket prices at the flagship Latin Quarter theatre complex. Starting Friday, full-price tickets will drop $2 to $9.50 and tickets for midweek shows, children, and seniors will be a flat $7.50. Prices at the Cote des Neiges theatre will drop $1.76 to $5.74.
Cineplex Galaxy is Canada’s newest movie exhibitor. The company was created by the merger of the Galaxy Theatres chain with 20 movie houses, and Cineplex Odeon with 63 theaters. Onex Corp., which controls both chains, took the merged company public in November on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
AMC, based in Kansas City, Mo., is known to be interested in dumping the 22-screen Forum multiplex, one of only seven Canadian theatres in its network. Its small reach means that AMC is often beaten out as it tries to land the movie blockbusters that bring in the crowds. If a deal involving the AMC is struck, it would be a welcome return to downtown Montreal for the revitalized Cineplex.
The company was forced into bankruptcy restructuring in 1998 that forced it to close a handful of screens in the heart of Montreal, including the Faubourg Ste. Catherine and the Egyptian.
Cineplex has no plans to reopen or build new theaters downtown, citing the high cost of doing so.