Digital deal takes in new era for Regent

The Regent Community Cinema in Leven's Commercial Road
The Regent Community Cinema in Leven's Commercial Road

A deal was expected to be struck last night (Tuesday) which could secure a much brighter future for Leven’s Regent Cinema.

The five year partnership agreement between Film Mobile Scotland and the Regent will mean the local venue can boast a film programme to match that of big-player rivals, such as Odeon.

From the second week of April, local audiences can enjoy the latest film releases, National Theatre and West End productions, ballet, opera and even rock concerts.

And the change is all thanks to the introduction of bang up-to-date digital projection equipment.

Ian Brown of Film Mobile Scotland said: “We’ve been in talks with the cinema for about a year, during which time it was in a position of having to potentially close down.

“We are a company based in Edinburgh - with venues from Peterhead down to the north east of England - and we thought we would be in a position to help the Regent that little bit more and develop it as a flagship independent cinema in Fife.

“We would be taking the financial burden away so they wouldn’t have to go looking for the £50-60,000 cost of digital equipment and it would be a joint effort to bring in the audiences then.”

The news, which comes just a week after the Regent celebrated its fourth anniversary, could represent a dramatic turnaround in the cinema’s fortunes.

In March last year, a new board was formed to save the Regent from the brink of closure although, since then, it has struggled to bring sufficient audience numbers through the door.

Graeme Campbell, acting vice-chairman, said: “There’s been slippage because we can only show films in 35mm; increasingly the big movies are released in digital and we’ve been forced to show smaller, less popular films.

That’s put a dent in the cinema finances over the past few months.”

The new partnership agreement with Film Mobile Scotland represented a positive move for the Regent, he commented.

“The whole board has seen the proposal put on the table by film mobile and the deal is going ahead.

“They have a good track record and run a number of successful venues in Scotland. It’s a quite a good fit for us.

“We will see how it pans out for us over the next few months.”

Meanwhile, the Regent is actively seeking new board members and a new chairman, possibly a retired businessman with a keen interest and background in cinema.

“Someone who can drive us forward to the next stage,” said Graeme.

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