AMC Kabuki 8 remains closed for nearly a week

The AMC Kabuki 8 in San Francisco remains closed nearly a week after the movie theater suddenly shut down in the middle of screenings last Tuesday, citing “an issue with emergency lighting,” as the Chronicle first reported. (SFGATE and the San Francisco Chronicle are both owned by Hearst but operate independently of one another.)

“Kabuki will be closed for emergency repairs until further notice,” read multiple signs that were still tapped to the locked doors of the theater on Sunday afternoon. “We’re so sorry for the inconvenience.”

A security guard inside told SFGATE he did not know how long the repairs would take or when the theater would reopen. The posted signs encouraged patrons to check AMC’s website for updates on the situation, where a message highlighted in red confirmed there were no changes on the temporary closure.

A spokesperson for AMC did not immediately respond to SFGATE’s request for comment Sunday, but a representative for the theater chain told the Chronicle last week “a generator that powers the emergency lighting failed” and they “weren’t comfortable operating the building” without it for safety reasons. The theater plans to repair the generator but is also exploring some temporary solutions, the representative continued. They did not specify what time of day the incident occurred.

Signs confirming the indefinite closure of the AMC Kabuki in San Francisco on April 17, 2022.

Signs confirming the indefinite closure of the AMC Kabuki in San Francisco on April 17, 2022.

Amanda Bartlett/SFGATE

The closure disrupted what would have been the opening weekend of “Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore” as well as ongoing screenings of “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” “The Batman,” “Ambulance” and “Sonic the Hedgehog 2.”

The Japantown movie theater originally opened in 1960 as a dinner theater where kabuki performances were held. The venue was later purchased by AMC and over the years, it also hosted events for San Francisco’s Cherry Blossom Festival, the San Francisco Opera, and a number of film festivals including the San Francisco International Film Festival and CAAMFEST. The space was acquired by Robert Redford’s Sundance Cinemas in 2006 and operated under that name until 2017, after Sundance Cinemas was obtained by Carmike Cinemas, which was subsequently purchased by AMC again that year.

This is a developing story and will be updated with more information as it becomes available.

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