Supporting the arts

Alamo Drafthouse rolls out at-home movies during COVID-19 shutdown

Alamo Drafthouse rolls out at-home movies during COVID-19 shutdown

Houston, Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Katy, Jan 2017, interior of auditorium
Alamo Drafthouse is offering independent films to stream at home. Rendering courtesy of Boucher Design Group

Movie-going is one major past-time we're all adjusting to not doing anymore. And while we may not currently be able to gather in a dark room with strangers and eat popcorn while watching a flick, one Austin-based theater chain is trying to give us the next best thing — while also supporting its local outlets.

Alamo Drafthouse is now offering films that can be screened right from home, no pants required. 

The Virtual Cinema initiative allows independent movie theaters to make money during the unprecedented global pandemic. It's led by distributors like Kino Lorber, Film Movement, and Magnolia Pictures.

For the price of a standard ticket ($12, though specialty screenings can vary), users can stream curated or independent films for a set number of days. But unlike streaming a movie via something like AppleTV or through a cable provider, the money goes directly to the local theater. 

“The entire reason [my wife] Karrie and I built theaters in the first place was to bring people together in a celebration of film,” says Tim League, Alamo Drafthouse founder and CEO, in a release. “Our theaters are currently closed, but that doesn’t have to mean our communities have to remain shuttered as well."

In that spirit, the Alamo is also offering specialty screenings, including the revival of Terror Tuesday and Weird Wednesday, two of the Drafthouse's long-running weekly events. Every week, the theater will offer another curated horror film and weird movie, respectively. 

You can see a lineup of available films here, and check Alamo's Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for future additions.

After all, there are only so many episodes of Tiger King available.