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Movie Theaters Hoping 'Top Gun' Sequel Will Bring Many Back To Theaters

PLYMOUTH, Minn. (WCCO) – After a 36-year wait, the sequel to "Top Gun" has finally cruised into theaters.

The original "Top Gun" grabbed $357 million at the worldwide box office.

Now, many movie theaters are hoping the success of "Top Gun: Maverick" will help give them a big boost in business.

The film is currently only being released in theaters and it's encouraging news since theaters had to close during the pandemic and they've played catch up ever since.

The co-owner of Mann Theatres, Michelle Mann, said revenue is only 60% to 70% of what it was pre-pandemic.

She said despite the surge in streaming, people still want to go to the movies.

"Everybody has a kitchen at home, right?" she said. "Why don't you cook every night at home - because you want to go out, you want to go to a restaurant and feel a different experience. It's the same with a movie theater. Since the pandemic, people want to come out and have an experience because they were locked in their homes for so long."

The blockbuster sequel to the 1986 hit seems to be bringing fans back to the theaters.

"Top Gun: Maverick" Royal Film Performance - Arrivals
(credit: Neil Mockford/FilmMagic,)

"This is the first movie I've been at in four or five years probably," said movie fan Mike Minor. "So I prefer to stay at home, but it will make me come back to the movies again."

"This is the first movie we've seen in a theater in years," said Anne Scherff and Robert Allison. "It's our first time back and it was a huge event so we wanted to see it in theaters."

"We go to the movies only when there's very few people that look like they're going to show up and it's a movie that we really want to see," said Guy V'angelico. "Most of the other movies we stream and watch at home in the home theater."

A number of movies are choosing theaters-only releases first before they head to the streaming platforms including "Jurassic: World Dominion," which opens June 9, and "Minions: The Rise of Gru" hitting theaters July 1.

Mann said she's hoping this year will help them get back to one of their best years for business, which was 2019. Even though theaters depend on customers to come watch movies, the actors and directors are relying on the theaters, too.

"Let's be honest, you're not going to be making the same amount of money streaming a movie than you would releasing it into the movie theaters," Mann said. "So, the support from the actors and directors has been phenomenal and when they're vocal about it, it really feels good that they want to support us.

Top Gun is being distributed by Paramount, which also owns WCCO-TV. Top Gun is only in theaters for 45 days and then it's available to stream on Paramount+.

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