Paper: Few cinemas will reopen on Monday after restrictions are lifted

Empty seats in a cinema.
Empty seats in a cinema. Source: Ken Mürk / ERR

Only a few movie theaters plan to reopen on Monday when restrictions are lifted, newspaper Eesti Päevaleht reported on Thursday. Smaller venues have said they will reopen but bigger chains are hesitant.

Kadri Ärm, the CEO of Apollo, which has nine cinemas with a total of 39 screens across Estonia, could not say when their doors would reopen.

"Restrictions on opening up are hampering the recovery of normal business operations, and the costs of being open are greater than the potential benefits," she told the newspaper

"Following the 2 + 2 requirement will allow only 30-32 percent of seats to be sold in each screening. If the 50-person rule is added here, the number of seats will be further reduced, it will vary from screen to screen."

Katre Kärner, the marketing manager of Tallinn's Coca-Cola Plaza and several other cinema owners, did not answer the question of when the cinema could reopen.

The reopening of the Cinamon cinema chain is also unclear. Georg Abozenko, the service manager of Kosmos cinema and the multiplex cinema of the T1 shopping center, said the chain is trying to open all three of its cinemas at the same time.

The first venue to release a new program on its website is Tallinn cinema Sõprus. The Artis cinema in Tallinn will also open on Monday.

Movie theaters were forced to close in March when the government announced the emergency situation to mitigate the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). The emergency situation ended on May 17 but social distancing rules will remain in place for the foreseeable future which hinder public gatherings.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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