Cineworld is closing all 543 of its Regal Cinema theaters in the United States following the delay of the upcoming James Bond film No Time to Die. The chain will also be closing its theaters in the U.K.
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Regal is the second biggest movie theater chain in the U.S. The closure will impact up to 28,000 employees in the country.
Cineworld Action Group, an employee group based in the U.K., says the company has not reached out to them: “We have found out vital information about our jobs from the media throughout the pandemic,” the group tweeted. “Workers have been left out of discussions that should’ve included our voices. However, in this case it goes beyond belief. To find out you may no longer have a job from the media is awful.”
National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) head John Fithian told Variety how he expects the pandemic to shape the future of movie theaters: “If we don’t have any movies until we’re fully vaccinated as a world, a lot of the theater companies are going to be gone and the theaters themselves won’t be there,” he said. “So your infrastructure to play your movies and get grosses will not be the same. This idea of waiting out the pandemic to make your movies more profitable doesn’t make sense to me. There won’t be as much of an industry left to play your movies in if you do that.”
No Time To Die will be released on April 2, 2021.
Variety reports that the theaters will stay close until 2021.