Bleeding independent cinemas have big hopes for blockbuster releases after turbulent three years

Home Arts Bleeding independent cinemas have big hopes for blockbuster releases after turbulent three years
Bleeding independent cinemas have big hopes for blockbuster releases after turbulent three years

Independent cinemas are still recovering from the turbulent three years of the COVID pandemic, but a year of blockbuster movie releases has sparked hope for struggling business owners. 

Michelle Coles, the owner of Cinema Augusta in Port Augusta and other cinemas in Moonta and Kadina, said during the pandemic there were very few movies made.

“We have had a very difficult time over the last two or three years with getting film product,” she said.

“We’re only just starting to get our film product through now.

“Fortunately, we’ve worked very hard and financially were quite stable, so we were able to manage it [the business] ourselves and just keep our heads above water.”

Foot traffic remains down about 40 per cent at Ms Coles’s cinemas but new film releases set for this year have her feeling optimistic.

a woman with glasses in a strip top and her hand in a sling in a cinema
Michelle Coles owns Cinema Augusta and says the last three years have been hard work. (ABC News)

“I’m not sure if it’s people are not coming back to the cinema because they’ve got used to watching TV at home [and] they’ve got used to streaming,” she said.

“Is it because of COVID — are they still frightened to come back into crowded places?

“This year there’s lots of good film product coming out  … so we’re hoping that picks us up.”

Part of Blyth’s furniture

In the town of Blyth, 13 kilometres west of Clare in South Australia’s Mid North, locals show pride in their cinema.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.