The company that operates Regal Cinemas says they will close all of their movie theaters starting this Thursday, because of the loss of any major blockbusters coming out anytime in the near future.

It's like a grocery store staying open without having any groceries to sell. That's what Regal Cinemas is saying about the current state of the movie theater industry.

Regal in Niles and in Boardman will stay closed indefinately.

But what about Tinseltown in Boardman?  A spokesperson for Cinemark which operates it tells 21 news:  "We do not currently have plans to close our U.S. theatres and are continuing to align with demand, including reducing operating hours and days while we await new studio content to encourage theatrical moviegoing."

Meanwhile the president of the new Golden Star Cinema in Austintown says they are in it for the long haul, still open 7 days a week.

"The weekends are doing very good. People are coming back to the theaters, slowly but they are coming back and once they come in and see the comfort level that we are giving them, they are definitely becoming a return customer," said Frank Moses of Golden Star.
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Moses says he's not just talking comfortable chairs, he's also talking about safety precautions being taken for COVID, like extra fresh air being brought in through ventilation as well as sanitizing and social distiancing measures.

But according to a YSU professor, for the film industry to be back releasing big movies, there will need to be a vaccine.

"I definitely think a vaccine is going to help then I think it's just going to be a matter of time. If I had a vaccine and it was proven safe I would would absolutely feel safe going back into a movie theater or a live theater performance," said associate professor, Matthew Mazuroski.

Other than smaller independent films there aren't many big studio movies left on the 2020 schedule. Disney's "Soul" is still expected to show around Thanksgiving and the "Wonder Woman" sequel from Warner Brothers is still scheduled. But, in time, even those could still change.