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DENVER-A Chapter 11 reorganization is working despite a third-quarter revenue decline of 17%, says the president of Arapahoe County-based United Artists Theatre Group.

Revenues have come in at $449.5 million in this third quarter in comparison to $480.2 million in third quarter 1999. Year-to-date revenues are $413.5 million, down 14.3% from 1999′s $482.6 million.

But, the reason that revenues dropped is because the company is closing under-performing theaters. There are about 23% fewer theaters than a year ago. “There’s no question that our reorganization is working,” Kurt Hall, UA president, tells GlobeSt.com. “If you look at our revenues per screen and our average concession sales, they’re consistent with the overall market.”

Nationally, there has been a significant decline in theater construction and an increase in theater closings but, Hall says “it is going to be a very long recovery period” for the overbuilding in the industry. In addition, the movie industry came up short on third-quarter blockbuster films. Hall expects a stronger fourth-quarter revenue showing with the release of films such as Jim Carrey’s “The Grinch.”

Early next year, Denver businessman Philip Anschutz, Colorado’s richest man, expects to take over United Artists. “We’re just moving through the bankruptcy process,” Hall says. “Things are going just about as we planned.

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