With no new movies, Cinemaworld closes again

With no new movies, Cinemaworld closes again

LINCOLN – After re-opening to the public for a few weeks, Cinemaworld in Lincoln has announced its decision to temporarily close again.

The movie theater first closed its doors due to coronavirus at 6 p.m. on March 16. 

The bar, restaurant and arcade at CW Lanes and Games re-opened on June 9, with bowling offered again on June 30. On Friday, July 17, the movie theater re-opened under new guidelines. 

Cinemaworld in Lincoln began showcasing movies that had already been released in a program called “CW Rewind Cinema.”

Jim Deal, senior vice president of operations for Cinemaworld, said they were limited to screening older films because studios have paused the release of new films since March. Less than a week after the theater re-opened, Cinemaworld made the decision to shut each of its theaters down again. 

CW Theaters Lincoln Mall announced the decision on Facebook, saying, “Due to many factors we feel it is in the best interest of our employees, guests and communities that we re-close our doors for the next few weeks. The studio has delayed releases, there has been a large uptick in positive cases and information is changing by the minute. We love serving our communities, but public safety is as much a priority, so we are doing our part to keep you safe.”

Deal said the decision to open again would be tied to when they anticipate new movies will be released. “There have been a lot of changes to the new movie release schedule,” he said, with some film releases pushed further and further since March. “We’re constantly monitoring it.”

Right now, he said they’re hoping to open again sometime in mid-August – but even that date depends on the release of new movies. 

“We desperately want to be open, but it’s just not economically viable for us to do so before new movies come out,” he said. 

Some of the films they’re keeping an eye on include Christopher Nolan’s ‘Tenet,’ which is scheduled to be released internationally in August before its U.S. premiere.  

“Christopher Nolan is an amazing director who has been very supportive of our industry. We know he wants to put movies in theaters where they’ll be seen,” Deal said. 

The live-action ‘Mulan’ movie is one of the big Blockbuster films that has been delayed. It was initially slated to debut in March, and has been postponed indefinitely. Disney has some films scheduled for the end of August, such as ‘The New Mutants’ and ‘Phineas and Ferb the Movie: Candace Against the Universe,’ and Deal said he expects some releases around that time from smaller studios. He said the theater is also hoping to add more video gaming options such as live events on the big screen, something they’ve always wanted to expand on and have had more time to develop while closed.

When Cinemaworld does re-open, its updated reserved seating system automatically buffers guests from other parties to ensure social distancing.

“We’ve got great safety mechanisms in place,” Deal said. “We’ve made a lot of changes to the way we operate to keep people safe and allow them to enjoy the experience.”