A group of movie theater companies — including AMC, Cinemark and Regal — have filed a lawsuit against the governor of New Jersey, claiming a First Amendment right to reopen during the pandemic.
The companies, led by the National Association of Theatre Owners, is challenging Gov. Phil Murphy’s order that allows malls, libraries, churches and museums to reopen, but keeps movie theaters and other entertainment venues closed.
First, why are malls, libraries, churches, and museums open in New Jersey? Second, lawsuits take months — years with appeals — and I’m not sure the theater companies have that long. Third, if the theaters are allowed to re-open in New Jersey, how does that help them without any movies to show? New Jersey isn’t LA or NY as far as box office numbers are concerned, and new movies keep getting delayed. Do the theaters think there’s a market of people willing to pay $20 to watch a re-run on the big screen and risk getting sick?
The movie theaters are now putting profits above human lives.