HYDE PARK, N.Y. (NEWS10) — New York State is the key to movies nationwide, according to Al Bulay, owner of five small theater in the Hudson Valley and Vermont. Bulay said New York and Los Angeles are such large markets that they control when movies are released.
Bulay said there are no major releases planned until after the election even though movie theaters are open in most of the country. Bulay had two theaters open in Vermont since May, but he had no new releases to play in them all summer.
At a meeting Thursday night at the Roosevelt Theater in Hyde Park, theater owner Bulay read statistics from Arbitron regarding movie theaters.
“There are 6,000 cinema sites, 40,998 screens,” Bulay said. “In a normal year, 1.3 billion tickets are sold. Forty-three percent of those people eat out before or after a movie. That means the loss to the economy is 559,000,000 meals per year.”
In just under two weeks, school taxes are due for Bulay on his theater in Hyde Park and Red Hook for a total of over $50,000. With his theaters still closed, there will be no money going into local schools.
Bulay said Governor Andrew Cuomo has been silent on opening theaters even after repeated meetings with New York theater owners.