Hurricane Matthew sparks widespread theatre closures in South Florida

Cinemas News

As Hurricane Matthew bears down on the southeastern United States, dozens of theaters in coastal cities and towns will be closed on Thursday.

The closures stretch from south Florida — including Miami — to South Carolina.

Hurricane Matthew, which is causing widespread destruction in the Bahamas, has strengthened into a Category 4 storm. It's expected to hit the east coast of Florida on Friday.

AMC and Regal, two of the largest theater chains in the country, operate numerous locations in the Miami area.

AMC Indian River 24, located in West Palm Beach, will be closed all day Thursday, along with AMC's seven Miami theaters. (On Wednesday, AMC hoped to keep the Miami locations open for part of the day, but altered those plans.)

On Thursday afternoon, AMC five theaters in Orlando, Fla., will also close, followed by theaters in Jacksonville, Fla.

Starting on Thursday, Regal is closing its theaters in all coastal areas in Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.

Both circuits say their theaters will reopen when conditions permit. The hope is that some cinemas in the Miami area will be back in operation on Friday.

Neither exhibitors nor Hollywood studios are ready to predict how much the weekend box office will be impacted by Matthew.

New offerings at the box office this weekend include adult thriller The Girl on the Train and embattled filmmaker Nate Parker's The Birth of a Nation.—The Hollywood Reporter