COVID-19 has reignited across the UK over the last two months with thousands of new daily cases. Boris Johnson has responded with a swathe of new restrictions, including limits on gatherings and a hospitality curfew affecting pubs and restaurants. Cinemas, too, have been hit by the restrictions amid the pandemic, with Cineworld now revealing it would be closing its doors.
Is it safe to visit the cinema?
Cinemas have suffered profoundly due to COVID-19, as they rely on crowds of people gathered indoors for hours on end.
These requirements make them a potential breeding ground for the virus, and as such restrictions have impacted them disproportionately compared to other businesses.
They have also resulted in mass closure, as Cineworld recently announced it would have to shut all of its UK locations.
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The loss seems to have triggered Boris Johnson, who recently told people to go to the cinema amid looming job losses.
He assured people it was safe to do so, adding local screens should have made them COVID safe.
The Prime Minister said: He said: “I would say to people, local cinemas do now have ways of letting their shows go on in a COVID-secure way and I would encourage people to go out to the cinema, enjoy themselves and support those local businesses.”
Government officials levelled COVID-19 restrictions on cinemas when they reopened in June.
The latest Bond movie, previously tipped to help cinemas revitalise their income, is now delayed until 2021.
Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidinger said the move left the chain a “grocery shop with no food”.
They have now had to temporarily close all of their locations, endangering 45,000 jobs, nearly 6,000 of which reside in the UK.
Mr Greidinger told Sky News: “We didn’t have the goods. After the Tenet release, which was really the most significant movie that was released at the end of August and early September, movies continued to move on schedule.”
“[But there] was an issue in the US market, because some markets there, mainly New York, did not open, the studios hesitated and kept on postponing the movies.
“Many significant movies have moved, like Mulan, like Black Widow, like Kingsman. Wonder Woman moved from October to December.
“And then on Friday, we got the news that the Bond movie – which, needless to say, for the UK is the biggest movie of the year every time we have a Bond – also decided to move.
“We were bleeding much bigger amounts when we are open than when we are closed – we are like a grocery shop with no food. We had to take this decision.”