Movie stars, directors, and executives presented exclusive sneak peaks of their upcoming projects and filmmaker conversations at the AMC Century City 15 in Los Angeles this week.
The event was part of The Big Screen Is Back initiative from the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO), the Motion Picture Association (MPA), studios, and exhibitors.
Live and pre-taped guests included:
- Arnold Schwarzenegger who said, “I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the theaters.”
- In the Heights director Jon M. Chu, who screened an eight-minute clip from the June 11 theatrical release.
- Jennifer Hudson, who will star in the August 13 Aretha Franklin biopic Respect.
- Dwayne Johnson, who will star in Disney’s Jungle Cruise on July 30.
- Ryan Reynolds, who will star in Disney and 20th Century Studios’ Free Guy on August 11.
- Star Wars: The Force Awakens director J.J. Abrams.
- NATO Chairman and Marcus Theaters CEO Rolando Rodriguez.
- Get Out and The Purge producer Jason Blum.
As of Sunday, 70 percent of Americans say they are “very” or “somewhat” comfortable seeing movies on the big screen. That number marks a record high since the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown began in March 2020, according to the National Research Group (NRG).
The Big Screen is Back initiative was launched on April 25 at the Academy Awards pre-show, with a commercial featuring Matthew McConaughey.
This comes shortly before the industry launches its first-ever Cinema Week, an initative to get audiences back into theaters from June 22-27 with exclusive in-theater content and giveaways. Read our coverage of Cinema Week here:
Listen to the most recent episode of The Boxoffice Podcast, featuring excerpts from a recent Boxoffice Live Sessions webinar with the organizers of Cinema Week: