#GoldOpen movement behind 'Crazy Rich Asians' showings to partner with AMC Theaters

The collaboration aims to streamline group movie-going, theater buyouts, bulk regular-price ticket purchasing, and more through a ticket buying system.
Image: A scene from "Crazy Rich Asians"
A scene from "Crazy Rich Asians."Sanja Bucko / Warner Bros. Pictures

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/ Source: Variety

LOS ANGELES — #GoldOpen, the Asian community movement that bought out theaters for showings of "Crazy Rich Asians," has announced a new partnership with AMC Theaters.

The collaboration aims to streamline group movie-going, theater buyouts, bulk regular-price ticket purchasing, and more through a ticket buying system that includes a dedicated ticketing web page, purchasing support, and special events throughout the year. The We Company's Meetup.com and Facebook Groups will also allow organizers to more easily distribute tickets, coordinate viewings, and meet other supporters.

In August, to support "Crazy Rich Asians," the first major studio film with a majority Asian cast, #GoldOpen creators spread the word on social media that they were buying out theaters to draw a record box office. The film has since garnered over $238 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing romantic comedy in the last decade.

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"AMC Theaters is a long-time exhibitor of Asian-led films, and this partnership with #GoldOpen helps AMC and the entire film industry continue to support diverse storytelling and make these movies more accessible to a growing audience segment," said Elizabeth Frank, AMC Theaters' executive vice president of worldwide programming and chief content officer. "Group movie-going is already affordable and growing in popularity, and this partnership will make it more accessible to communities throughout the country."

#GoldOpen is also expanding its lineup of top Asian films, TV shows, and publishing projects, to include projects from "New Majorities." It features projects that are women-led, from the African diaspora, Latinx communities, and LGBTQ+ creatives.

"Director Jon M. Chu proclaimed that 'Crazy Rich Asians' was more than just a movie — it was a movement. But a movement only lasts with a machine behind it. We're ecstatic for the next phase of #GoldOpen to support more New Majority creative voices and their projects so the world we watch finally reflects the world we live in," said Bing Chen and Janet Yang, the co-creators of #GoldOpen.

Director Jon Chu discusses his film "Crazy Rich Asians" in Las Vegas.Chris Pizzello / Invision/AP file

"#GoldOpen is having a lasting impact on the entire Asian American storytelling environment. We see this with the record number of Asian and Asian American indie films being bought up during Sundance this year and directly attribute this demand to momentum from #GoldOpen movement from last year," said Alex Wu, co-founder of the Asian American Artist Foundation.

"After five successful movements to support both indie and blockbuster Asian films, we're excited to support more stories from more communities more often. It goes without saying that when certain canonical institutions fail us, it's incumbent on art to represent, reinforce, and return the world we deserve. Moreover, while it's been inspiring to witness the Asian community better support itself, we can't just build for ourselves — we must systematically support others who've inspired us, thereby explicitly or latently elevating opportunities to tell our own stories. In doing so, we forge greater paths for the next generation of Asian and all storytellers," said Chen and Yang.

The effort was founded by Gold House, a collective of Asian leaders dedicated to cross-cultural collaboration. It first organized buyouts and social media strategy in 2017 to support independent films like the Sundance-winning "Gook," and was reignited a year later to support the launch of "Crazy Rich Asians," as well as films like "Searching," "Burning" and "Aquaman."

The #GoldOpen movement wasn't the only one to encourage moviegoers to turn out and send a message — "Black Panther" nabbed the highest number of pre-sale tickets for a Marvel feature at the time, in part because of the theater buyouts organized by student groups, churches, businesses and other organizations that rallied to support the film, which had a majority black cast and a bevy of strong black female characters.

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