Hendersonville’s Regal Streets of Indian Lake & IMAX movie theater is one of more than 500 Regal theaters across the country that suspended its operations last week amid low turnout during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Cineworld, Regal’s parent company, temporarily suspended operations at all of its 536 locations in the country at the close of business Oct. 8, citing “an increasing challenging theatrical landscape and sustained key market closures.”
“This is not a decision we made lightly. We did everything in our power to support safe and sustainable re-openings of our cinemas and we are so very grateful for our employees who implemented the new protocols, which resulted in lots of positive feedback from customers who visited our cinemas and felt safe,” the Cineworld company said on its website. “We were very proud of the fact that cinemas were open for two months and there was not one COVID case resulting from visiting the cinema.
“We cannot underscore enough how difficult this decision was.”
The closure is the second for Regal, which started to reopen U.S. locations in late August after its initial closure in March.
The lack of blockbuster releases heavily contributed to the company’s suspension of operations as movie studios continue to delay release dates of highly-anticipated films, such as the James Bond film “No Time to Die,” “Wonder Woman 1984,” “Black Widow,” “A Quiet Place Part II” and “Candyman.”
"Despite our work, positive feedback from our customers and the fact that there has been no evidence to date linking any COVID cases with cinemas, we have not been given a route to reopen in New York, although other indoor activities – like indoor dining, bowling and casinos were already allowed,” Cineworld CEO Mooky Greidinger said.
“The prolonged closures have had a detrimental impact on the release slate for the rest of the year, and, in turn, our ability to supply our customers with the lineup of blockbusters they've come to expect from us. As such, it is simply impossible to continue operations in our primary markets."