Restrictions eased, but most cinema halls remain closed

A worker sanitising a cinema hall in Delhi.   | Photo Credit: MOORTHY RV

Though the decks have been cleared by the Delhi government for the reopening of cinema halls at 50% capacity, many theatres in the city are taking it slow with most of them staying closed on the first day of operations.

While a few film buffs landed up outside theatres on Monday morning hoping to catch a film on the big screen, owners said they are waiting for a big-ticket film release, 100% vaccination of employees and proper sanitation of their premises before welcoming audiences.

Private screening

A spokesperson from INOX, which runs several screens across the Capital, said they would open their cinemas on July 30 with 100% of employees vaccinated with the first dose. INOX also plans to introduce private screening, where guests can reserve an entire auditorium for a private show and choose the content, either from the current playlist, or an old blockbuster.

“INOX believes the new and innovative offering full of delights would be safe and secure, and will become a new way of celebrating special occasions. With simple and easy pricing, and a convenient booking process, INOX aims to curate memorable banqueting experiences with features like welcome message on the screen and other personalised services,” the spokesperson said.

Gautam Dutta, CEO, PVR Limited, said the company is aiming at 100% vaccination of its employees before reopening, apart from following all standard protocols issued by the government, and conducting deep EPA-approved ULV sanitisation at cinemas to make them safe.

“We are hopeful to receive a positive response from the audience as the content pipeline for Bollywood, Hollywood and regional languages is promising for the year ahead,” Mr. Dutta said.

Film buffs disappointed

A few film buffs eager to watch a film in a theatre were seen outside a cinema hall in Jangpura early in the day but were disappointed to find the ticket counter shut. “We could not find tickets online so decided to give it a shot at the ticket window, but it is not open. I was really looking to do something different as I am an avid movie watcher,” said Aarav Singh, a student.

Another moviegoer at Connaught Place said he had hoped to catch a movie before an appointment later in the day but was left disappointed.

Online bookings and app-based bookings have not started yet with sources from app-based ticket booking companies saying that they are waiting for information from cinema hall owners to provide their schedules before going live.

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Printable version | Sep 19, 2021 3:46:14 PM |

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