CHESTERFIELD, Va. – Cineworld, the parent company of Regal, announced that it will be temporarily suspending operations at all of its 536 Regal theatres in the U.S., as of Thursday, October 8.
The decision was driven by ongoing theatrical calendar delays and continued closure of New York and other key U.S markets.
“This is not a decision we made lightly, and we did everything in our power to support a safe and sustainable reopening in the U.S.– from putting in place robust health and safety measures at our theatres to joining our industry in making a collective commitment to the CinemaSafe protocols to reaching out to state and local officials to educate them on these initiatives. We are especially grateful for and proud of the hard work our employees put in to adapt our theatres to the new protocols and cannot underscore enough how difficult this decision was,” said Mooky Greidinger, CEO of Cineworld.
As major U.S. markets, mainly New York, remained closed and without guidance on reopening timing, studios have been reluctant to release its pipeline of new films. In turn, without these new releases, Cineworld cannot provide customers in both the U.S. and U.K. – the company’s primary markets – with the breadth of strong commercial films necessary for them to consider coming back to theaters against the backdrop of COVID-19.
These closures will cost approximately 40,000 employees across the U.S. their jobs.
“Despite our work, positive feedback from our customers and the fact that there has been no evidence to date linking any COVID cases with cinemas, we have not been given a route to reopen in New York, although other indoor activities – like indoor dining, bowling and casinos were already allowed. The prolonged closures have had a detrimental impact on the release slate for the rest of the year, and, in turn, our ability to supply our customers with the lineup of blockbusters they’ve come to expect from us. As such, it is simply impossible to continue operations in our primary markets,” Greidinger added,
Regal said this is a temporary closing and they will continue to monitor the situation closely.
While many theatres main in limbo, Reporter Sierra Fox will have a full report tonight on 8News at 11 pm.
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