With news from Boris Johnson that part of the lockdown measures starting July 4th will include the reopening of cinemas, individual cinema chains have chosen to adopt their own specific starting dates.
Closed for 3 months already and facing the continuing threat of coronavirus, the big chains have come up with a comprehensive strategy for safe opening. A government supported document was issued by the industry, titled ‘Cinemas – keeping workers and customers safe during Covid-19′; this 29-page article covers a vast range of different measures, including social distancing and hygiene. It was written in collaboration with the cinema trade body the “UK Cinema Association” and direct input from the “Department for Culture, Media and Sport”; the “BFI Screen Sector Task Force” and the “Independent Cinema Office”.
The Odeon chain has announced they will open on July 4th with a limited number of seats allocated for sale for each showing whilst guaranteeing unoccupied seats between parties to ensure they meet the 1m social distancing requirements. Start times of films will be staggered to minimise queuing. They recommend booking and printing of tickets online, and the ticket checks will be conducted on a visual basis only. No cash will be accepted within the premises and pre-packaged food and drinks can be purchased using contactless payment.
Showcase Cinemas are also opening on 4th July; their website is advertising some recent favourite films and a collection of all-time classics. New blockbusters which will be eagerly awaited, include the new Bond film “No time to Die” and “Mulan” the action drama film based on the 1998 Disney animated film.
Vue confirms on their website that they are opening 72 of their 92 venues from July 10th.
Cineworld has announced it will not open until 31st July in both the UK and the US due to the delay in new film releases.