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  • Writer's picturelilmyacofield

Movies Are Back

Hope for Movie Theaters After AllBy Valeria QuezadaIn March 2020, COVID-19forced the temporary and permanent closure of movie theaters across the nation,including Carlsbad’s own La Cueva 6 by Allen Theaters. Other than shut downs, the closing of movie theaters postponed the release of new movies and created an overall anxiety over thefuture fortheaters, especially over employees who became unemployed upon these shut downs.La Cueva 6 was closed for a little over than a year, making a return in April of 2021, with pre-pandemic and new employees. Manager Chris Fierro said, “The employees that were left wanting to come back were not really sure what to expect upon reopening. Most of them were just excited to come back and the new hires were excited to start.”If you drove by the movie theater before COVID, the parking lots were always packed. Movie premiers on Thursday nights were the busiest day of the week. Summers were busy with families and their kids enjoying the weekly summer movie event. According to employees, the theater is picking upnow upon reopening, but it is still not as busy as it was before the pandemic for different reasons. “Such assome people just not beingready to go back to theaters because of COVID,” explainedFierro. From the moment of reopening, the theater has changed its way of operating to be COVID safe. The entire theater and its stations are thoroughly cleaned and sanitizedas well as keeping any reusable items to a minimum. For instance, popcorn refills are now done in separate bags to give refills, but only recently,since refills had originally not been allowed upon opening. The employees at La Cueva 6 wear gloves to handle food and cleaning. “We now have to clean

the whole theater very thoroughly, which is a good thing. I think as before we would clean and keep it nice, but not as to the extent as we do now.” Despite the safety guidelines being implemented and movies premiering, La Cueva 6 is not as busy assume have hoped. More people arenowusing streaming devices instead of going to premiers in person. During COVID-19many people became accustomed to watching new movies from their comfort of their home. For instance, Warner Media is a big studio giant that has control over popular movie franchises; DC Superheroes, Harry Potter, the Conjuring Universe, Godzilla, etc. Warner Media also has their own streaming service, HBO Max, which went live at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020. Since then, they have had a deal where they premier movies on the streaming service the same day they premier in theaters.“It's stuff like this that gives the consumer a sense of non-urgency as they don't have to watch the next big movie in the theater; they can watch it in the comfort and safety of their own home whenever they want. This takes away from theaters and is a factor in why theaters are not as busy as they once were,” speculatedFierro. Watching movies premier in the comfort of your home is not the same experience as being in theaters on opening night. Lining up to buy a ticket and snacks, then filing into the rows is what makes the experience 10 times better. Especially right now, as the world transitions into a “new normal,” the movie theaters gives a sense of familiarity. The members of the community should support La Cueva 6 and its hardworking employees one day out of Thursday through Tuesday. Since reopening the employees have been nothing but amazing, making the process of reopening smooth for the community. Fierro concluded, “Everyone who works hereis amazing and I’m glad to work with them.They made and continue to make this an awesome place to

work at. Shout-out to all of them there,they are the reason we have a workingmovie theater here in Carlsbad. They all truly work very hard.”

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