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Regal and Cineworld cinemas are shutting down across the US and UK

Regal Cinemas virus outbreak Fla.
Phelan M. Ebenhack via AP
A Regal Cinemas movie theater is viewed during a new coronavirus pandemic, Friday, Oct. 2, in Winter Park, Fla.

(Update: Closures confirmed)

By Jazmin Goodwin and Charles Riley, CNN Business

 (CNN) -- Cineworld Group, the owner of Regal Cinemas, will suspend operations at all of its theaters in the United States and the United Kingdom beginning on Thursday. The closures will affect 45,000 employees.

The news comes just days after the latest James Bond film, "No Time to Die," was delayed until spring 2021 — the latest blow to the movie industry. A second wave of coronavirus is also hitting Britain and many US states.

In a statement released on Monday, the company said it could not provide customers "with the breadth of strong commercial films necessary for them to consider coming back to theaters against the backdrop of Covid-19."

The group owns 127 theaters in the United Kingdom, including Picturehouse Cinemas, and 536 theaters in the United States. It is the world's second largest movie theater business after AMC.

Cineworld's decision to close its theaters again has renewed fears about the ability of the company to survive the pandemic and its shares plummeted more than 42% in London on Monday.

News of the shutdown came as a surprise to many Cineworld staff. Cinema Action Group, a collective of Cineworld employees in the United Kingdom, tweeted on Saturday, "there has been no consultation with staff whatsoever."

Variety first reported the potential closure.

After closing for several months during coronavirus lockdowns, the group had started reopening cinemas in July with new safety protocols in place. On Monday, the company was not able to say when its theaters might next be operational.

"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," CEO Mooky Greidinger said in a statement.

Last month, Cineworld reported a loss of $1.6 billion in the first half of 2020 as revenue slumped by 67%. It also warned of the need to raise more funds in case a second wave of coronavirus leads to more "prolonged" shutdowns. In its statement on Monday, the company said it was "assessing several sources of additional liquidity and all liquidity raising options are being considered."

More than a dozen major films, including "Black Widow," "Tenet" and "Wonder Woman 1984," have either been delayed or skipped theaters altogether and gone digital, as in the case of Disney's "Mulan."

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Comments

9 Comments

    1. This comment seems to fit you negativity, sorry you are so far down that pathway. Many of us still go out on dates with our spouses, are you so jaded that is not a thing anymore?

    2. And that is exactly why we have a celebrity game show host as President. 2/3 of America is fat, lazy, and watching bad TV all night long so they voted for a familiar face.

  1. Lemme see here- Americans expect home delivery of food products by way of Amazon- do most of their shopping on-line- entertainment through Hulu- Netflix- Tik-Tok and Youtube… venture out every once in awhile to buy booze and dope… and since the various Governors of each state have closed their businesses- shut their schools- and recreational facilities Americans have pretty much become a nation of “shut-ins”- loners- and recluses”… that can’t be healthy ! Thank Kate- you’ve destroyed the social part of society !

    1. Those cinemas were going broke well before COVID hit. In related news, the Governor of Oregon did not create COVID and had nothing to do with people not wanting to spend $40 to watch horrible movies at the theater. Did you just get here?

      1. Its interesting to see how moviepass revitalized theater going for a couple years there but for some reason the chainplexes fought it tooth and nail and killed it. Even when we all still bought the absurdly overpriced concessions lol… just like bend real estate speculation, these companies never have a plan b when things get tough because their business model is structured around taking our money for almost nothing in return

  2. Gee, I sure will miss the rude movie goers who talk during the film, sit their feet on the back of your chair, show up late and stand in front of you trying to figure out where to go, the concessions you have to refinance your house to get, and sitting through 30 minutes of ads and previews before I get to see the movie I paid too much to see.

    I do feel badly for the employees though.

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