Cinemark Theatres
Cinemark Theatres is a chain of movie theatres owned by Cinemark Holdings, Inc. in North
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

 and South America
South America
South America is a continent situated in the Western Hemisphere, mostly in the Southern Hemisphere, with a relatively small portion in the Northern Hemisphere. The continent is also considered a subcontinent of the Americas. It is bordered on the west by the Pacific Ocean and on the north and east...

 and Taiwan
Taiwan , also known, especially in the past, as Formosa , is the largest island of the same-named island group of East Asia in the western Pacific Ocean and located off the southeastern coast of mainland China. The island forms over 99% of the current territory of the Republic of China following...

. It has its headquarters in Plano
Plano, Texas
Plano is a city in the state of Texas, located mostly within Collin County. The city's population was 259,841 at the 2010 census, making it the ninth-largest city in Texas and the 71st most populous city in the United States. Plano is located within the metropolitan area commonly referred to as...

, Texas
Texas is the second largest U.S. state by both area and population, and the largest state by area in the contiguous United States.The name, based on the Caddo word "Tejas" meaning "friends" or "allies", was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in...


Cinemark's Missions Statement Reads as follows:
"Cinemark is the organization where safety, respect, care, and concern for the employee and customer is unsurpassed. Therefore, it is the preferred international motion picture exhibitor, and achieves investors' goals."

As of March 31, 2011, the Cinemark circuit is the third largest in the United States with 293 theatres and 3,825 screens.
They are the most geographically diverse circuit in Latin America with 139 theatres and 1,125 screens in 13 countries..
Cinemark also holds the spot of second largest circuit internationally.

Cinemark operates theaters under several brands, including its flagship Cinemark, Tinseltown USA, Century
Century Theatres
Century Theatres is a movie theater chain which operates many multiplexes in the western United States, primarily in California, Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, and Arizona. In recent years, it has expanded into the inter-mountain states, the Pacific Northwest, Texas, and parts of the Midwest...

 and CinéArts—theaters which feature independent film
Independent film
An independent film, or indie film, is a professional film production resulting in a feature film that is produced mostly or completely outside of the major film studio system. In addition to being produced and distributed by independent entertainment companies, independent films are also produced...


The Cinemark brand's mascot, seen in policy trailers since 1988, is a cat named "Front Row Joe". The other characters found in policy trailers include "Popcorn Penny", "Elton", and "Clyde". While Front Row Joe and Popcorn Penny are still featured in some in-theater advertising, other characters have been retired.


Cinemark was started in 1984 by Lee Roy Mitchell as a chain of theatres in Texas, Utah, and California. Through new theatre construction and acquisitions, it became the third largest theatre chain in the United States and the second largest theatre chain in the world. In 2009, Cinemark introduced its own large screen concept, known as XD, and has plans to install it in many well-performing locations around the world.

United States Department of Justice lawsuits

In the 1990s, Cinemark Theatres was one of the first chains to incorporate stadium-style seating into their theatres. In 1997, several disabled individuals filed a lawsuit against Cinemark, alleging that their stadium style seats forced patrons who used wheelchairs to sit in the front row of the theatre, effectively rendering them unable to see the screen without assuming a horizontal position. The case was heard in El Paso district court as Lara v. Cinemark USA, where a judge ruled that the architecture of Cinemark's theatres violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. The ruling was later overturned by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled that Cinemark only had to provide an "unobstructed view" of the screen, and that since handicapped patrons' view was only awkward and not actually obscured, Cinemark was not violating the law.

In response, the United States Department of Justice
United States Department of Justice
The United States Department of Justice , is the United States federal executive department responsible for the enforcement of the law and administration of justice, equivalent to the justice or interior ministries of other countries.The Department is led by the Attorney General, who is nominated...

 filed their own suit against Cinemark while appealing the appellate court's decision. The DOJ argued that, while Cinemark was not technically violating the ADA, it was nevertheless discriminating against handicapped patrons by relegating them to the worst seats in the auditorium. Cinemark responded by filing a lawsuit against the Department of Justice, alleging misconduct on the DOJ's behalf. Cinemark's lawsuit was thrown out, and the Department of Justice proceeded with its lawsuit. Cinemark ultimately agreed to settle out of court before the court came to a ruling, agreeing with the DOJ that it was in the company's best interest to end litigation before a ruling was issued. Per the terms of the settlement, Cinemark agreed to renovate all existing theatres to provide wheelchair-using and other handicapped patrons access to rows higher in its theatres, and also agreed that all future theatres would be constructed so as to allow handicapped patrons better access to higher rows. In turn, the Department of Justice agreed not to bring further litigation against the company in relation to the architecture of stadium seating as it applies to the ADA.

Century Theatres acquisition

In 2006, Cinemark purchased Century Theatres
Century Theatres
Century Theatres is a movie theater chain which operates many multiplexes in the western United States, primarily in California, Nevada, Utah, New Mexico, and Arizona. In recent years, it has expanded into the inter-mountain states, the Pacific Northwest, Texas, and parts of the Midwest...

 with a combination of cash and stock bonds. This acquisition added over 80 theatres and many more screens. Some of these theatres were subsequently shut down either being phased out as under performing or replaced with new complexes. The only theatres not transferred as part of the merger were Century 21, Century 22, Century 23 and all of the drive ins. These locations transferred back to Syufy Enterprises.

Gay marriage

In 2008, CEO Alan Stock donated $9,999 toward the successful passage of California
California is a state located on the West Coast of the United States. It is by far the most populous U.S. state, and the third-largest by land area...

's Proposition 8
California Proposition 8 (2008)
Proposition 8 was a ballot proposition and constitutional amendment passed in the November 2008 state elections...

, an initiative restricting the definition of marriage to opposite-sex couples and overturning the California Supreme Court's ruling that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry. An ensuing campaign, launched by opponents to the Prop 8 passage, encouraged patrons to see the Gus Van Sant
Gus Van Sant
Gus Green Van Sant, Jr. is an American director, screenwriter, painter, photographer, musician, and author. He is a two time nominee of the Academy Award for Best Director for his 1997 film Good Will Hunting and his 2008 film Milk, both of which were also nominated for Best Picture, and won the...

 film Milk
Milk (film)
Milk is a 2008 American biographical film on the life of gay rights activist and politician Harvey Milk, who was the first openly gay person to be elected to public office in California, as a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors...

, starring Sean Penn
Sean Penn
Sean Justin Penn is an American actor, screenwriter and film director, also known for his political and social activism...

 in the title role of gay-rights activist Harvey Milk
Harvey Milk
Harvey Bernard Milk was an American politician who became the first openly gay man to be elected to public office in California when he won a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors...

, at a competing theater in protest. Others called for a more general boycott
A boycott is an act of voluntarily abstaining from using, buying, or dealing with a person, organization, or country as an expression of protest, usually for political reasons...


Muvico Theaters purchases

In 2009, in order to save the company, Muvico Theaters
Muvico Theaters
Muvico Theaters is a movie theater chain. Its headquarters are in Oakland Park, Florida, near Fort Lauderdale.Based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Muvico has seven complexes in Florida. Muvico has also expanded out of the state of Florida to include complexes in the Chicago Metropolitan Area , and...

 sold four theatres to Cinemark. The theatres were Arundel Mills
Arundel Mills
Arundel Mills is a mall located in Hanover, Maryland and is now owned by Simon Property Group. With its GLA, it was the largest mall in Maryland, until the Westfield Annapolis Mall surpassed it with its 2007 expansion...

Egyptian 24 in Hanover, MD; Paradise 24 in Davie, FL; Palace 20 in Boca Raton, FL; and Boynton Beach 14 in Boynton Beach, FL. Arundel Mills was often one of the highest-grossing theaters in the nation for box-office debuts, the theater has been part of what makes Arundel Mills a top tourism destination in the state of Maryland.

External links

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