AMC Stock Surges on the Back of 'Barbie' and 'Oppenheimer' Openings, Court Decision
"Barbenheimer" double feature boosts AMC attendance, breaks box office records
In a groundbreaking weekend for the film industry, "Barbie's" opening weekend shattered records, raking in an impressive $162 million domestically. This remarkable achievement marks the largest opening weekend box office for a film directed by a woman. Not to be outdone, "Oppenheimer" also had a successful weekend, bringing in $82 million, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
This surge in success is just the latest twist in the rollercoaster journey of the company's stock. From trading at nearly $2 per share to becoming a meme sensation and then experiencing a dip back to single digits, the ticker has seen its fair share of ups and downs.
The phenomenon dubbed "Barbenheimer" has captivated audiences and sparked a frenzy of excitement. AMC, one of the leading theater chains, announced that it saw the highest number of moviegoers in over three years. A staggering 8 million people flocked to AMC theaters worldwide, making it the most attended weekend since 2019. The company attributed this surge in attendance to movie enthusiasts who indulged in the unique experience of watching both highly-anticipated films as a double feature. Notably, 87,000 members of AMC's Stubbs reward program opted for this exciting cinematic adventure.
Concessions sales at AMC Theaters also reached new heights, with Saturday's sales for "Barbenhimer" coming second only to the opening Saturday for "Avengers: Endgame." This impressive performance by both films demonstrates that well-made and well-marketed movies can thrive when released on the same weekend.
In addition to the success at the box office, the stock's upward trajectory can be attributed to a recent Delaware State Court decision. This ruling prevented the company from converting equity stock into common stock, a move that was part of a settlement agreement for a lawsuit filed by Allegheny County Employees' Retirement System. The lawsuit alleged that the company's board breached its fiduciary duty. Delaware judge Morgan Zorn rejected the conversion plan, citing the failure to consider the rights of shareholders not involved in the lawsuit. Approximately 2,850 shareholders who were not part of the initial lawsuit voiced their concerns to the court.
In response to the court's decision, AMC Chairman and CEO Adam Aron expressed the importance of maintaining financial flexibility. He emphasized the need for the company to be able to raise equity capital to protect shareholder value in the long run.
It is worth noting that AMC was caught up in the meme stock frenzy of 2021, where retail investors purchased stocks that were being shorted by institutional investors. The stock reached an all-time high of $72.62 in June 2021, enabling the company to raise capital and avoid bankruptcy. However, since then, the price of AMC shares has experienced a decline, with the stock closing at $5.85 per share on Monday, a decrease of approximately 23% from its peak earlier this year.
Despite the fluctuations in the stock market, the success of "Barbie" and "Oppenheimer" at the box office has undoubtedly brought a renewed sense of excitement to the film industry. This remarkable achievement showcases the power of captivating storytelling and effective marketing in attracting audiences. As the industry continues to evolve, it will be fascinating to see what new records and milestones await in the future.