By Taylor Rexrode
Regal Entertainment Group, the nation’s largest theater chain, has purchased Waco’s Hollywood Jewel 16 and 42 other Hollywood Theaters across the country for $191 million.
Hollywood Jewel 16 is located at 7200 Woodway Drive.
Regal Entertainment, based out of Knoxville, Tenn., operates 6,880 screens across 38 states.
With this newest acquisition, Regal will have nearly 7,400 screens.
Christine White, the southern regional marketing manager for Regal, said that these acquisitions are part of what Regal does.
“Acquisitions are an integral component to our overall business strategy,” White said. “We are excited to bring Hollywood Theaters into the Regal Entertainment Group family.”
Regal and Hollywood entered into an agreement on Feb. 19. Regal will pay the $47 million that Hollywood leaves behind in lease obligations. Of the cash portion in the agreement, approximately $157 million will help repay Hollywood’s debt.
Hollywood Theater’s corporate office was unable to be reached about the agreement.
When asked about the changes, White said Hollywood customers will hardly notice the gradual adjustments.
“The transition will be so seamless that some moviegoers may not even notice,” White said. “Regal Entertainment Group will continue to provide a great movie-going experience to all movie fans nationwide.”
The new Regal theaters will offer the Regal Crown Club, a rewards program that allows customers to accumulate credits for free popcorn, soft drinks and movies.
Club membership is free and is available at theaters or online.
Prices for tickets and concessions at the former Hollywood theaters will be evaluated on an ongoing basis.
Houston senior Meghan Attoe has enjoyed visiting the Hollywood Theater and was surprised to find out about the purchase.
She said that even if the price changes, she will probably keep going to the theater.
“I would probably keep going especially if they kept their curfew hours for people under 17,” Attoe said.
Currently she said with the curfew, moviegoers under the age of 17 at Hollywood Jewel 16 cannot see a film past 8 p.m. without a guardian. Whether the curfew will remain or not is unclear at this time.