Movie theaters have struggled during the pandemic, and it's probably been months since you've seen a film on a big screen in Syracuse or Utica or anywhere else. Looks like you may be waiting longer.

Now comes the stunning news that Regal Cinemas is considering closing (at least temporarily) all of its movie theaters in the U.S., including the ones located inside Destiny USA. Regal lost $1.6 billion in the first half of 2020 because of the pandemic shutdown.

In early March, right before the pandemic struck, reported that Regal planned to spend over a billion dollars ($20 million of it in Syracuse) to improve its theaters across the U.S. The work was to feature "upgrades to the lobby and all auditoriums, all new seating, VIP sections with luxury recliners in certain areas and new cafes with new food and drink offerings." also reported Regal's plans for new enhanced viewing:

The 4DX experience adds special effects to the in-theater experience, including motion-synchronized seats, wind, fog, rain, lightning, snow, bubbles, vibrations and scents.

Alas, all of this appears to have gone down the drain in a swirl of disappointments associated with COVID-19. More than a dozen major films, including the next James Bond thriller, No Time to Die, have been postponed until 2021.

Here are the locations of some Regal theaters in New York state:

  • Syracuse
  • Ithaca
  • Binghamton
  • Albany (Crossgates and Colonie malls)
  • Rochester
  • Buffalo

Some theaters have been allowed to re-open at limited capacity, but crowds have been light across the country. With about 560 theaters, Regal is the second largest theater chain in the U.S., behind AMC.

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