Regal Cinemas sues insurance companies for failing to cover losses from pandemic closures

Regal Cinemas has sued three major insurance companies, alleging they failed to pay policies for losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic that shuttered theaters around the world for a year.

According to court documents, Regal filed a lawsuit against Allianz Liberty Mutual and Zurich American in Los Angeles Superior Court seeking unspecified damages as well as a court order ordering the companies to indemnify the claims.

“Regal has suffered hundreds of millions of dollars in financial losses since March 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, including lost ticket sales, concession sales and additional expenses,” the suit states. “Despite issuing extensive all-risk business interruption insurance policies, insurers have refused to compensate Regal for a single dollar of its losses.”

Regal, which purchased insurance to cover business interruptions before the pandemic, filed a claim under its policy in 2020. The pandemic caused the closure of 549 locations in the United States. The insurers rejected the claim in October 2020. They said the business suffered no physical damage at the scene and the pandemic was covered by policy exclusions. “loss of market, loss of use or indirect or remote loss”.

“The insurers’ refusal to cover Regal’s losses has no justifiable basis,” the suit states. “It violates the plain meaning of policy and case law in California and across the country addressing similar issues in similar policy language.”

While Regal’s theaters, along with those of other chains, reopened nationwide last spring, revenues from those theaters are still well below pre-pandemic levels. Despite recent record revenues, these theaters still have a lot to do. “Spider-Man: No Way Home” domestic box office revenue since 2021 is just $4.86 billion, less than half of the $11.3 billion in 2019.

The lack of titles is a major reason for the decline. According to box office mojoIn 2021, only 435 films were released in theaters, compared to 911 films in 2019. Indeed, studios had to be realistic about how they would release films in a recovering market. Due to the increase in the number of infections related to COVID-19, the attendance of moviegoers over the age of 40 was much lower than in 2020. This despite the fact that there were more hits such as “The Last Jedi” and “The Phantom Menace”. “No coming home.”

Representatives for the insurers did not immediately respond to requests for comment from .

This report was written by Pamela Chelin

Kristan F. Talley