Cineworld to close from Thursday

Shaun Jones and Emma Poppleton at the Weston Cineworld. Picture: Jamie Gray

Shaun Jones and Emma Poppleton at the Weston Cineworld. Picture: Jamie Gray - Credit: Archant

Cineworld is temporarily closing its UK and US cinemas from Thursday as a result of the pandemic.

The cinema chain, which has a branch in Weston’s Dolphin Square, confirmed it is struggling due to a lack of new films to draw people in and safety measures which have limited audience numbers.

The firm’s 127 Cineworld and Picturehouse UK cinemas will shut from Thursday, affecting more than 5,000 staff.

In a statement, chief executive Mooky Greidinger said: “This is not a decision we made lightly, and we did everything in our power to support safe and sustainable reopenings in all of our markets – including meeting, and often exceeding, health and safety guidelines in our theatres and working constructively with regulators and industry bodies to restore public confidence in our industry.

“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.”

“Cineworld will continue to monitor the situation closely and will communicate any future plans to resume operations in these markets at the appropriate time, when key markets have more concrete guidance on their reopening status and, in turn, studios are able to bring their pipeline of major releases back to the big screen.”

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The cinemas have been affected by delays with key films, including the latest James Bond movie, No Time To Die, which has been put back until April 2021, and Mulan, which was released straight to Disney’s streaming service.

It is hoped the Cineworld cinemas will be able to reopen again next year.

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