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Plano-based Cinemark opens its theaters for college football playoffs

Plano-based Cinemark opens its theaters for college football playoffs

Cinemark Luxury Loungers
Now this is the way to watch football. Photo courtesy of Cinemark

The Cinemark movie theater chain is hosting an unusual series aimed at college football fans. Plano-based Cinemark Holdings, Inc. has teamed up with ESPN to bring the college football playoffs to the big screen.

A select number of Cinemark theaters will host screenings of three playoff games, as follows:

  • Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington
  • Semifinal at the Capital One Orange Bowl, at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens
  • National Championship, the biggest game of all, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis

Cinemark senior VP Justin McDaniel says in a statement that it'll be a one-of-a-kind viewing experience that will make viewers feel like they are part of the on-field action.

"We are thrilled to offer an incredible opportunity for college football fans to gather and cheer on their teams in our immersive auditoriums with larger-than-life screens and surround sound," McDaniel says.

The schedule is as follows:

  • Friday, December 31, at 4:30 pm: No. 1 Alabama will square off against No. 4 Cincinnati in the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic
  • Friday, December 31, at 8:30 pm: No. 2 Michigan will take on No. 3 Georgia at the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Capital One Orange Bowl
  • Monday, January 10, at 9 pm: The winners of the two games will go head-to-head for the College Football Playoff National Championship

All showings will include ESPN’s live pre-game studio programming.

The local markets for all four CFP semifinalists will feature theatres providing this unique experience. The full list of markets includes:

  • Huntsville, Alabama
  • Los Angeles
  • Sacramento
  • San Francisco
  • Colorado Springs
  • Hartford, Connecticut
  • Jacksonville, Florida
  • Atlanta
  • Baton Rouge
  • Baltimore
  • Detroit
  • Jackson, Mississippi
  • Albuquerque
  • Las Vegas
  • New York
  • Rochester
  • Cincinnati
  • Cleveland
  • Columbus
  • Dayton
  • Oklahoma City
  • Eugene, Oregon
  • Austin
  • Dallas
  • El Paso
  • Houston
  • Salt Lake City
  • Seattle

A $10 concessions package allows attendees to reserve their seat. Fans will score special prizes after each contest based on the winning team.

For information or to buy tickets, visit or the Cinemark mobile app.

Fortunately, these games are not among those that have been canceled due to a COVID-19 surge — specifically, players who've gotten COVID-19, which prevented the teams from having enough players. So far, five bowl games that were to have been played this week have been impacted.

The full schedule of games is listed on