AMC theaters to start reopening in Los Angeles on Monday

FILE PHOTO: Movie theatres opening in New York City
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc, the world's largest cinema operator, will start reopening its Los Angeles locations starting with two theaters on Monday, the company said in a statement on Friday.

Cinemas in Los Angeles County, the home of Hollywood and the largest moviegoing market in the United States, have been closed for a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Local authorities cleared them to resume operations again starting on Monday if they limited attendance to 25% capacity.

AMC said it would return to business starting with theaters in Burbank and Century City. The company plans to begin opening the rest of its theaters in the Los Angeles area, and elsewhere in California, starting on March 19.

Los Angeles is the largest market for AMC by number of theaters. The company has 56 theaters in California including 25 in Los Angeles County.

Movie theater chains and independent cinemas were devastated by the extended closures and are hoping that audiences will return in the spring and summer as coronavirus vaccines become more widely distributed.

(Reporting by Lisa Richwine in Los Angeles; Editing by Leslie Adler and Matthew Lewis)