Photo Credit: Karen Zhao
British Columbia film buffs can now take in a movie for the first time in months, with theatres reopening under Phase 3 of the province’s COVID-19 restart plan.
Movie giant Cineplex is opening eight theatres around the province Friday, while Landmark Cinemas is opening 13.
Vancouver’s independent Rio Theatre resumed screenings on Thursday, with a capacity of 50 people in its 400-plus seat theatre.
Masks are being encouraged, but none of the theatres has made them mandatory.
The major theatres are making all seating reservation-only, boosting cleaning schedules, and are reducing and staggering show times to allow better allow physical distancing as guests enter and exit the shows.
Both chains are cutting seating capacity. Landmark says it cutting capacity by 75 per cent for regular theatres, and 50 per cent for its recliner seating theatres.
Both Cineplex and Landmark are initially offering tickets at $5 in a bid to entice viewers back to the screens.
Guests are being encouraged to buy their tickets online, and if buying at the theatre are being asked to use contactless pay methods.
Both chains have also cut their concession offerings down to core items such as popcorn and drinks.
Cineplex says it plans to reopen its remaining 16 B.C. theatres throughout July.