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Regal closing all theaters for second time this year

STAFF REPORTS
Published on Monday, October 5, 2020

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Hollywood 20 in Greenville often had an empty parking lot during its daytime movies.
 

Hollywood 20 in Greenville often had an empty parking lot during its daytime movies.

 

Regal theater employees received a corporate email today informing them the movie chain is closing all its locations Thursday. Regal is shutting down theaters again less than two months after it started to reopen U.S. locations in August.

“I got the email that said we will be closing until further notice,” the employee told GreerToday.com. “It said it will be temporary but we’re not sure if it will open for the holidays or not.”

About 40,000 Regal theater employees face a furlough as more than 7,000 movie screens will be dark with 536 locations across the U.S.

Upstate Regal theaters were virtually empty during the re-opening requiring only a handful of employees.

The closure reflects "an increasingly challenging theatrical landscape" due to the COVID-19 pandemic and is temporary, the chain said in a statement.

Regal made the decision after the James Bond franchise's “No Time to Die” was shelved until 2021, further pushing back a release that had already been delayed.

Regal is the second-largest film exhibitor in the U.S., after AMC Theatres. It is a subsidiary of Cineworld Group, which is based in the U.K. – where the corporation is also closing more than 100 theaters.

"This is not a decision we made lightly, and we did everything in our power to support a safe and sustainable reopening in the U.S.," said Mooky Greidinger, CEO of Cineworld, noting the chain's safety precautions for staff and moviegoers.

Movie studios have delayed dozens of big releases over the past six months as cinemas sat empty or showed films only to limited audiences.

The postponed titles include likely blockbusters such the superhero movies “Wonder Woman 1984” and “Black Widow” along with “A Quiet Place Part II” and “Candyman”. In addition, Disney shifted several high-profile releases to online-only, including “Mulan”.

While the company calls the closures temporary, it did not name a date for a possible resumption of business, saying it will "continue to monitor the situation closely."

 

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