Bedford Cineworld shuts temporarily - here’s why

The delaying of film releases by studios is a major part of its decision
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Cineworld has confirmed it will close all of its cinemas from Thursday (October 8), after struggling due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The cinema chain - which has a venue at Aspects Leisure Centre in Newnham Avenue, Bedford - had reopened in July after the March lockdown, but all of its UK and US outlets will now temporarily close again.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The closures will impact a total of 45,000 employees, 6,000 of who are in the UK.

Bedford Cineworld (Google)Bedford Cineworld (Google)
Bedford Cineworld (Google)

Chief executive of Cineworld, 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, local health and safety guidelines in our theatres and working constructively with regulators and industry bodies to restore public confidence in our industry.”

Mr Greidinger said the chain is both grateful for and proud of the work that employees put into adapting its cinemas in order to adhere to new Covid-19 protocols.

The company revealed the delaying of film releases by studios was a major part of its decision to close. The news comes just days after filmmakers announced the next James Bond film, No Time To Die, was to be delayed for the second time, until April next year.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"In turn, without these new releases, Cineworld cannot provide customers in both the US and the UK - the company's primary markets - with the breadth of strong commercial films necessary for them to consider coming back to theatres against the backdrop of Covid-19,” the chain explained.

It’s not yet known when the chain could reopen branches. Cineworld has said it will monitor the situation and any plans for studios to release their major films.

The company stressed its main priorities are the safety of both customers and staff, alongside cash preservation and cost reduction.

As noted in Cineworld’s Interim Results, which were announced on September 24, the business is currently assessing “several sources of additional liquidity and all liquidity raising options are being considered.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Mr Greidinger explained Cineworld will continue to monitor the situation closely and will then communicate any future plans to resume operations 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."

A version of this article originally appeared on our sister title, The Scotsman.