Cineworld, the owner of  theater chain Regal Cinemas files for Bankruptcy

The movie theater business was harshly affected by COVID closures, and Cineworld reportedly said ticket sales this year have been lower than anticipated

Cineworld, the owner of major movie theater chain Regal Cinemas, is on the cusp of bankruptcy, according to multiple reports.

Regal Cinemas

The London-based parent company confirmed to BBC News that it is considering bankruptcy and is asking attorneys from Kirkland & Ellis LLP and consultants from AlixPartners, for guidance on nthe ext steps, according to The Wall Street Journal.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Cineworld has $4.8 billion in debt and runs 751 sites worldwide. According to the company’s website., its U.S. subsidiary, Regal, has 505 theatres in 42 states, as well as American Samoa, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Saipan as of April.

The announcement comes nearly two years after Regal and other theatres were forced to temporarily down their doors in October 2020 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Cineworld claimed ticket sales have been lower than anticipated and a short supply of blockbuster films this fall is also prompting the move, according to CNN Business, which got a statement from the company that operations would still be “business as usual” for its Regal locations.

“Cineworld would expect to maintain its operations in the ordinary course until and following any filing and ultimately to continue its business over the long term with no significant impact upon its employees,” read the statement.