Carlton Cinema set to reopen for first time since March 2020

Red and black letters on a white sign on an elevated wall outside.
The Carlton has been central towards independent, classic and foreign films for audiences in the campus and Yonge and College St. communities. Photo courtesy of Daniel Centeno/CJRU.
Daniel Centeno - CJRU - TorontoON | 16-09-2021

Downtown Toronto's Carlton Cinema is reopening on Sept.17 after being closed for more than a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In an online statement on Sept. 16, Imagine Cinemas, the owner of the Carlton, writes:

"We're excited to reopen Imagine Cinemas Carlton on Friday, September 17! Join us for Candyman, Mogul Mow-gli, Stillwater, Pig, The Suicide Squad, and Best Sellers. Grab your tickets at imaginecinemas.com."

Further, the Carlton’s Instagram profile posted about the reopening of the cinema as well.

In March 2020, the theatre released a statement about the theatre closing immediately during the pandemic’s first province-wide lockdown.

Chief Operating Officer Gina Facca wrote in the statement: "We continue to believe that the health and safety of our team members and patrons is of utmost importance. We are in a very unusual times and need to take measures to keep our community safe. As such, we have decided to close our theatres effectively immediately. We will re-open when it is safe to do so. We look forward to a time in the near future where we can all enjoy the love of movies together."

During the pandemic, the Carlton held online events, including digital screenings of films like Dirty Dancing and La La Land for the Lionsgate Live Events in April 2020.

Contests, which include creating PSAs (public service announcements) and being part of a welcome back video were other ways the cinema connected with its community online during the pandemic.

While the theatre is owned by a major chain, the Carlton is known for having a more unique, robust lineup of films, and a classic set-up of chairs, screen sizes and concessions.

Along with playing popular releases, the theatre plays independent, foreign, experimental and classic films.

Notable events in the past include themed series and special showcases.

This included monthly Saturday night showings of the Tommy Wiseau film, The Room.

Also, the Carlton has hosted smaller film festivals and screenings, including several cultural film festivals like the Ukrainian Film Festival, the Documentary short film festival, and the animation and dance film festival.

The cinema was also central towards X University film students showing their short films to wider audiences.

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