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Major Movie Theater Chain Announces Indefinite Shutdown; Some Central, South Coast Theaters Impacted

The nation’s second largest theater chain has announced that it’s shutting down its more than 530 cinema complexes in the Unites States, which includes a half dozen on the Central and South Coasts. The announcement includes some theaters in our region which are currently open, and some which were close to reopening.

It’s a huge blow to the movie industry.  Regal Cinemas is shutting down all of its theaters this week.  It’s citing the lack of major new movie releases as the reason for the move.  Officials with the British company say there isn’t enough product out there to attract enough theatergoers to make keeping the doors open worthwhile.

Many major studios have pull blockbusters from the release schedule.   The latest movie in the James Bond franchise was just pushed back from this year to 2021.

Regal recently reopened its theaters in Arroyo Grande, and its two theater complexes in Santa Maria.  The chain had been hoping to get permission to reopen its Ventura, Camarillo, and Simi Valley theater complexes this week.

There’s no word on when the theaters may reopen.  The full closure of all of the Regal Theaters in the U.S. and U.K. affects 45,000 employees.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral.