Cineworld set to close all 128 UK sites - cinema staff face anxious wait at four North East multiplexes
Cinema chain Cineworld, which has four branches in the North East, is set to close all of its UK sites in the coming weeks, with up to 5,500 jobs at risk.
It is understood that the closures come as the release of the latest James Bond, No Time To Die, film was further delayed from November 2020 to spring 2021.
According to The Sunday Times, Cineworld bosses will write to Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden to tell them that business has become "unviable" as studios keep putting back blockbuster releases.
The closure of its 128 sites across the country will put up to 5,500 jobs at risk. The four North East cinemas are in Boldon, Dalton Park in Murton, Middlesbrough and Newcastle.
In July, the Government promised a package of more than £1.5billion to help the arts and culture industries forced to shut down earlier this year as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cineworld had reopened most of its cinemas in July when lockdown measures were eased across the country.
Daniel Craig's final appearance as James Bond will not now hit big screens until next April, it was announced on Friday.
No Time To Die was originally scheduled for release in April 2020, but was first pushed back to November as a result of the pandemic.
A statement on the film's official Twitter account said: "We understand the delay will be disappointing to our fans but we now look forward to sharing No Time To Die next year."