Giants of Exhibition 2021

After five consecutive years of more than $11 billion in revenue at the domestic box office, the exhibition market came to a violent halt in March 2020. The biggest crisis in the industry’s history wasn’t brought about by familiar threats like home entertainment or piracy; instead, it was a global pandemic, of a scale not seen in at least a century, that plunged exhibition into the sort of existential crisis it had managed to avoid for generations. A promising start to the year sputtered to an alarming $2.25 billion in ticket sales, an 80 percent year-over-year drop.

While there remains to be a full accounting of the long-term damage caused by the pandemic’s economic disruption, changes to the traditional theatrical exclusivity model have already been felt at circuits across the nation. Yet despite the myriad challenges that exhibition faced in 2020, the industry rallied to persevere. Concession stands opened at theaters that were otherwise closed nationwide, pop-up drive-ins helped keep moviegoing alive during the summer months, and gift card drives provided a small respite for cinemas waiting to reopen. 

The reopening effort was fractured and presented its own challenges. After closing in March, major markets like New York City and Los Angeles never came back online, while other locations went through a series of openings and lockdowns with little to no warning for the business community. Those cinemas that could open were limited by a scarcity of new releases from major studios.

With the odds stacked against them, exhibitors have been strikingly resilient, despite the mounting woes of 2020. This year’s Giants of Exhibition ranking stands as a testament to the industry’s flexibility and resolve.

1AMC EntertainmentLeawoodKS19207,800600
2Regal CinemasKnoxvilleTN19896,989527
3Cinemark USAPlanoTX19844,517331
4Cineplex EntertainmentTorontoON20031,657161
5Marcus TheatresMilwaukeeWI19351,09789
6Harkins TheatresScottsdaleAZ193350133
7B&B TheatresKansas CityMO192442949
8Malco TheatresMemphisTN191536335
9CMX CinemasMiamiFL201634131
10Landmark Cinemas of CanadaCalgaryAL196533446
11National Amusements (Showcase Cinemas)NorwoodMA193632124
12Alamo Drafthouse CinemaAustinTX199731741
13Studio Movie GrillDallasTX200029427
14Caribbean CinemasSan JuanPR196828132
15Cinépolis Luxury CinemasDallasTX201127628
16Southern TheatresNew OrleansLA200326618
17Georgia Theatre CompanySaint Simons IslandGA199226325
17NCG (Neighborhood Cinemas Group)OwossoMI198326327
19Premiere Cinema Corp.Big SpringTX199325923
20Emagine EntertainmentTroyMI199725521
21Reading Cinemas USACulver CityCA200023824
22Pacific Theatres/ArcLight CinemasLos AngelesCA199323417
23Regency TheatresAgoura HillsCA199620628
24Landmark TheatresWest HollywoodCA197420140
25GQT MoviesGrand RapidsMI202020025
26UEC TheatresMaple GroveMN199319122
27Galaxy TheatresSherman OaksCA199818616
28Larry H. Miller Theatres (Megaplex Theatres)SandyUT199917615
29MJR Digital CinemasBloomfield HillsMI198016410
30Marquee CinemasBeckleyWV197916315
31Bow Tie CinemasRidgefieldCT190015620
32Cinema WestPetalumaCA198415414
32Cinema Entertainment Corp.Waite ParkMN196415419
34Coming Attractions TheatresAshlandOR198515318
35Flagship Premium CinemasCambridgeMA199514919
36Celebration Cinema By Studio CGrand RapidsMI194414511
37Epic TheatresDeltonaFL200314412
37Phoenix TheatresKnoxvilleTN200114414
39Cinémas GuzzoTerrebonneQC20031339
40Classic CinemasDowners GroveIL197813115
41R/C TheatresReisterstownMD193211913
42iPic TheatersBoca RatonFL200711615
42Allen TheatresLas CrucesNM191211617
44Santikos EntertainmentSan AntonioTX19481159
45Xscape TheatresNew AlbanyIN20131088
46Mitchell TheatresElkhartKS200510715
47Southeast Cinema EntertainmentCharlotteNC20031049
48R.L. Fridley TheatresDes MoinesIA19729818
48Kerasotes ShowPlace TheatresChicagoIL1909987
50Picture Show EntertainmentColorado SpringsCO20039611

Watch a replay of our panel with representatives from four of the domestic market’s circuits below