More Theaters Gone: 6 Alamo Drafthouse Locations Closing Immediately

Five Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas based in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and a sixth in Minnesota are closing their doors, effective immediately. The company that franchised the six cinemas — Two is One, One is None LLC — is seeking Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection.

The closures come as summer movie season is under way, but the usually robust period is off to a very slow start. May had a total domestic gross of $570 million that saw underperformance by five potential blockbusters. June will be better, though perhaps not by much.

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More than 600 employees at all six locations, including the Richardson, Las Colinas, Lake Highlands, Dallas, and Denton theaters, are being let go, as are those at a location in Woodbury, Minnesota. The company said it attempted to contact all impacted employees before the news became public.

The loss of six theaters joins a slow drip of similar closures across the country. National Amusements closed its theater in the Bronx, currently leaving a borough of 1.7 million people with a single multiplex. IndieWire reported on other movie deserts that leave entire regions without a theater.

Two is One, One is None, which is based in Irving, Texas, will file for bankruptcy after more than 13 years in operation. The decision to close these locations was not made by the corporate Alamo Drafthouse branch, but it reduces Alamo’s total locations nationwide from 43 to 37, a drop of nearly 14 percent.

In a statement provided to the press by Two is One, One is None, it said Alamo guest counts never recovered to pre-COVID levels, and the writers and actors strikes compounded issues last year. But because the company was a franchisee of Alamo, it paid franchise fees that some competitors did not. This amounted to roughly 10 percent of the locations’ sales, or $3.7 million, in 2023.

According to the statement, the company said contractual obligations with Alamo forced Two Is One to support the most unprofitable locations. Two Is One said it infused more than $3.5 million in payroll and operations while reducing costs to offset losses, “including repeatedly seeking relief from [Alamo] to reduce the non-competitive fee structure and to permit closure of the most non-profitable locations, neither of which were obtained.”

Two Is One recommended that “Season Pass and Victory Members and those guests with gift cards” contact Alamo Drafthouse in Austin.

“We are deeply saddened to find it necessary to take this step,” the LLC said in a statement. “We are grateful to all our employees who put in the work, day in and day out, to produce a special movie-going experience and to our many loyal customers for whom it was a pleasure to provide such a special experience.”

“We are very disappointed to learn today that our franchisee, which operates five locations in Dallas-Fort Worth, TX and one in Woodbury, MN has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and is closing their business effective immediately,” an Alamo Drafthouse spokesperson said in response to the news. “We are heartbroken for the franchisee’s teammates and the local film communities, however, we are working as quickly as possible to get Alamo Drafthouse Cinema back up and running in these cities. All other Alamo Drafthouse locations are operating as normal, with continued expansion plans across the country.”

The corporate Alamo Drafthouse declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2021 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and reorganized amid accusations of racism and sexism from the management at one of its Kansas City locations. It emerged from bankruptcy and ultimately opened several more locations. Workers at other locations have attempted to unionize due to alleged poor working conditions.

The Alamo circuit has reportedly sought a buyer for months. Alamo’s nationwide box office draw was 25 percent up from 2022, bringing in $134 million.

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