The coronavirus pandemic has made theatrical distribution suffer unlike any other industry during the lockdown. Now, thanks to rampant losses, Regal Cinemas is going to shutter locations on both coasts.
According to Deadline, Regal Cinemas will close the 18 locations in New York and California, effective Nov. 12. Those sites will stay closed now with the rest of the U.S. chain until further notice.
New York cinemas have been closed under orders from Governor Andrew Cuomo, but there was some hope they would be back by now. But thanks to surges with COVID, that looks like a pipedream now.
They had previously closed other theaters last month. The Cineworld-owned chain placed the blame for the closures on the unwillingness of California and New York governments to reopen their theaters.
"We did everything in our power to support safe and sustainable re-openings in all of our markets—including meeting, and often exceeding, local health and safety guidelines in our theatres and working constructively with regulators and industry bodies to restore public confidence in our industry," Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidinger said in a statement.
He indicated that it had been the chain's goal to survive until No Time to Die.
"But when the Bond decision arrived, a decision that followed numerous delays of other movies, we had to change the direction, close the cinemas and wait for a situation where the studios will be able to present a solid release schedule," Greidinger said. "The main thing blocking the studios is that they don’t see movement in New York—and in some other places—but New York is kind of the symbol. Even California is already 50% open."
The company-wide closures are expected to affect upwards of 45,000 thousand employees.
With the news of a vaccine imminent, we hope that by this time next year business is booming and these people find some relief.
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