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Cinemark founder Lee Roy Mitchell retires

Cinemark founder Lee Roy Mitchell is stepping down from the exhibition giant’s board of directors after a career spanning nearly 40 years.

He and his wife, Tandy, launched Cinemark in 1984, when he first took a seat in the boardroom. Mitchell served as CEO until 2006 and transitioned from executive chairman to member of the board of directors last year.

Kevin Mitchell, who founded ShowBiz Cinemas and served as CEO until selling his stake in the company in late 2021, will succeed Mitchell as director of Cinemark, which will be led by Sean Gamble as president and CEO.

“Our strategic vision was to build a leading global cinema circuit, and I am humbled to have worked alongside such an incredible leadership team and board to execute on that vision. Kevin is a natural successor given his considerable industry knowledge and experience gained over the past three decades,” said Mitchell of his role with his wife in building Cinemark to become the third-largest theater circuit in the U.S. market. with almost 6,000 cinema screens. in 16 countries.

Cinemark has weathered the disruption of the pandemic with Hollywood studios once again leaning on theatrical releases. But the exhibitor is still struggling to get viewers into its theaters and away from alternatives like Netflix and other digital platforms, not least with the offering of plush armchairs and new dining options.

Cinemark chairman Carlos Sepulveda paid tribute to Mitchell as he stepped down from the board.

“His entrepreneurial spirit, enthusiasm for moviegoing and passion for people helped differentiate the company and set its strategic direction. On behalf of the Board of Directors and the entire Cinemark team, we are deeply grateful to Lee Roy for his leadership and tremendous value over the years, and we will work diligently to continue to position the company he founded for long-term success. term,” said Sepulveda. said in a statement.

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