Maurice, Edward and Barney Dubinksy founded AMC Theaters in 1920 when they purchased the Regent Theater in downtown Kansas City, Missouri.
The name of the company changed to Durwood Theaters and later American Multi-Cinema, Inc. when Edward’s son, Stanley, took over the business in 1961.
AMC grew and expanded to have megaplex theaters all over the world, including Portugal and the U.K.
The company introduced stadium-style seating, in which the seats are placed on risers so that each person has an unobstructed view of the screen. Many of these seats have adjustable armrests that can be raised to create “Love Seat” style seating. Both of these features have become standard for nearly all movie theaters built today by all major chains.
In 2012 the Dalian Wanda Group, a Chinese conglomerate, purchased AMC for $2.6 billion. The deal included AMC’s 5,048 screens in 347 U.S. and Canadian theaters, as well as theaters in France, the U.K., and Hong Kong.
In several areas, the company has introduced in-house dining, called Fork and Screen. Customers can order full meals, including alcoholic beverages. These theaters offer reserved seating, as well as a “call” button, which summons a server.
In 2016, the company acquired Carmike Cinemas for $1.1 billion. This makes AMC Theaters the largest theater chain in the US. In April 2020, AMC announced that they were trying to raise more than $500 million to prevent the company from filing forbankruptcy.