PHOENIX — The three Alamo Drafthouse-branded movie theaters in Chandler, Gilbert, and Tempe will soon become Majestic Theaters after the local franchise owners and the Texas-based movie theater chain have reached a settlement and agreed to part ways.
The agreement, pending a judge's approval, comes after Craig and Kim Paschich, the franchisees who own the three Arizona theaters under Paschich Alamo Holdings, LLC, filed for bankruptcy in early 2020, citing financial issues exacerbated by the pandemic.
They then filed a civil lawsuit against Alamo Drafthouse seeking to end their franchise agreement, which Alamo Drafthouse then countersued for breach of contract.
With cases spanning Arizona, Delaware, and Texas, both sides have now reached a potential agreement.
"After many months of trying to work through an arrangement for Paschich Alamo Holdings LLC to continue operating the Alamo Drafthouse brand, we have mutually decided to part ways, pending court approval of filings in DE and AZ," said Chris Drazba, with Alamo Drafthouse, in a prepared statement.
"We hope to return to the Phoenix area again one day and wish our beloved guests a fond farewell," he said.
All three theaters are currently open and operating under the Alamo brand. The brand transition to Majestic is expected to begin in early September, a news release said.
"Our priority has always been to create joy for our guests and our staff with extraordinary programming, delightful food creations, and an eclectic selection of beer and cocktails," Craig and Kim Paschich said in a statement.
"So while the name on the sign is changing we want to assure our supporters, guests, friends and patrons that we remain "Under Old Management" and we are open uninterrupted throughout this transition."
Aside from the name change, staff, management, and operations at the theaters would remain the same as they did before, they said.
Most large movie theaters -- AMC, Cinemark, Harkins, and Regal -- have reopened in Arizona since state restrictions were lifted last year.
Flix Brewhouse in downtown Chandler remains closed and the landlord has repossessed the property. It is unclear if and when that location will reopen.
Studio Movie Grill in Scottsdale is permanently closed and Florida-based Touchstar Cinemas plans to open in that space.
Discount theater Picture Show closed its theater at Paradise Valley Mall, which is being demolished and redeveloped, but its theaters in Mesa and Prescott are open.
Pollack Tempe Cinemas, a local discount theater in Tempe, closed in March 2020 and has remained closed. Potential reopening plans have not been announced.