Going to the cinema seems like a forgotten pastime, the notion of sitting among strangers eating popcorn before a big screen seems like some fantasy realm cooked up by Pixar. Following yesterday’s announcements, however, the curtains began to tentatively part as Boris Johnson documented the UK’s roadmap out of the pandemic.
With James Bond and Co. eagerly waiting in the wings, Johnson stated that May 17th 2021 is the date in mind for cinemas to reopen their doors.
‘Step 3’ in the government’s newly announced plan to get the country out of lockdown and back to normality details the return of ‘indoor meetings under the rule of six’. This will include cinemas, as well as pubs, restaurants, hotels, theatres, concert halls and sporting stadia – provided they have capacity limits.
Capacity limits are still under TBC on the documented plan and it is this uncertainty that has left cinema owners sceptical about setting that pencilled in the date of May 17th in stone.
Last year’s stop-start approach to reopening cinemas was a costly endeavour as many cinemas failed to break-even with upstart costs and limited capacity numbers affecting the potential profits of screenings.
On this occasion, however, things look rather more hopeful as the vaccine begins to take effect. Once the capacity limit is confirmed in the next few days then we should have a clearer picture of what to expect.