OKLAHOMA CITY – A bill that was signed into law allows movie theaters across the state to sell alcohol to patrons, who could then enjoy the beverages in their seats.
Local theaters like The Warren in Moore already serve alcohol in special balcony areas.
However, House Bill 2186 allows theaters to serve alcohol in areas where minors are too.
“To me, it’s just about allowing people the freedom to purchase that legal product and, in this case, maybe inspiring some more economic development in Oklahoma City,” Sen. David Holt, who co-authored the bill, told NewsChannel 4 in March. “You can buy a drink at the Chesapeake Arena around minors. You can buy a drink at a restaurant around minors. There’s lots of ways that you can enforce access, and I think you can continue to do that at a movie theater and other states have proven that you can.”
A representative for AMC Theaters told lawmakers the concept is not new across the country, adding that it already has about 245 theaters across the country that serve alcohol.
Beverages would only be available for ticketed guests, to prevent the theater from becoming a “bar atmosphere,” he said.
On average, the representative said, a patron only consumes 1.1 alcoholic beverage per movie, adding that alcohol already exists in theaters.
NewsChannel 4 reached out to the corporate offices of all the city’s movie theaters.
Only AMC replied with the following statement:
“AMC proudly serves adult beverages in more than 240 locations nationwide, including some of the most popular family destinations, such as our theatres at Disney Springs in Orlando, Fla., and Universal Studios in Universal City, Calif. It’s a very popular amenity with guests, and AMC’s adult beverage concept, MacGuffins, has been honored with multiple awards for responsible service, as well as an award for best promotion among National Chain Restaurants. Along with plush, power recliners, more premium sight & sound offerings like IMAX at AMC and Dolby Cinema at AMC, and more food and beverage offerings, our adult beverage concept is another way AMC is delivering a better movie-going experience to guests throughout the country.”
On Tuesday, Gov. Fallin signed the bill into law.
Sen. Holt says it will take about 90 days for the measure to go into effect.