• Jonathan Shiek

Is This The End For Cinemas in Malaysia?

Do you remember the tingle of excitement as you wait in line to watch the new Avengers movie that everyone has been talking about incessantly? Do you also remember the sensation you feel as you walk towards the viewing halls, only to get slapped by the comforting scent of fresh caramel popcorn being made, as the aroma drags you by your nostrils towards the concession stand? Do you also recall the thrill you feel when all the lights in the hall go out indicating that the movie is about to start?

If you do, then unfortunately you may never be able to experience it again and if you don’t remember, then you never will.

Cinemas have long been our go to place to just escape from the harsh realities we face in our day-to-day life, or even as a way to treat ourselves for our accomplishments. The cinema has also been a place where some of us (me) had our first dates!

Needless to say, Cinemas has always played a significant role in our lives. So is it really the end? It may very well be. According to a report from The Star, the forced shutdowns cinemas faced due to the MCO’s has resulted in countless job losses, venue closes and downsizing.

MBO in particular was hit the worst as they had to liquidate voluntarily, resulting in 25% of their cinema screens all over Malaysia shutting down for good.

It gets even worse for the cinema industry sadly. As other non-essential services has been allowed to continue operations, cinemas has been left out of the mix which leaves members of the industry in an even worse state than they were during the first MCO. A statement by Datuk Yusof Haslam of Skop Productions mentioned that it is very unlikely for the cinema and film industry in Malaysia to stay afloat if their operations remain suspended.

This has led to a certain movement by TGV calling for our support. The movement is titled ‘Safe Cinemas, Save Cinemas’ and its aim is to send a message to the government allowing them to reopen for business.

Credits: TGV (Instagram)

Now I am aware that the current pandemic situation is still at an abysmal state and the SOP’s are still very much necessary to ensure that the deadly virus does not spread any further. But at the same time I do believe that it is rather unfair that gyms and casinos can operate but not cinemas.

Cinemas has always been there for us during our highs and lows. I believe its time that we return the favor. Safe Cinemas, Save Cinemas.


#cinema #film #MCO

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