On Friday, the U.S. Small Business Administration announced the timeline for exhibitors to apply for a disaster relief grant under the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program. Applications will be accepted starting Thursday, April 8th, with more details to follow. The SBA has been authorized to provide up to $16B in funding to motion picture exhibitors, operators of live-performance venues, museums and zoos. Recipients under the program may receive a grant equal to as much as 45% of the revenue earned by the venue during 2019, a much-needed lifeline to venues that were impacted disproportionately by the COVID-19 pandemic.
After a full year of closures and capacity restrictions, coupled with studios choosing to limit the flow of new releases, attendance at movie theatres dropped 80% in the last 12 months. Click here to sign up to receive updates from the SBA on the SVOG program, and click here to review the SBA’s Preliminary Application Checklist which lists the documentation that exhibitors should prepare to get ready to apply.