Scottish Cinemas Reopen May 17th

“I live in cinema. I feel I’ve lived here forever.” – Agnes Varda

After a year of Scottish cinema closures (with some intermittent periods of open doors), we can finally look forward to the big screen experience again. Cinemas across the country from Orkney to the Borders are firing up the projector and readying their teams to welcome audiences back safely.

The effects of COVID-19 on our sector can’t be diminished and may remain to be seen, but we approach this time with cautious optimism; we’re taking forward the mutual support and sharing between our members, a renewed focus on accessibility, and programming that explores the radical and inclusive possibilities of the cinema.

We asked some of our reopening cinemas to tell us about their reopening programme, and what they’re looking forward to. Other cinemas reopening this Monday in Scotland include Kino GlenrothesStudio Cinema DunoonRobert Burns Centre DumfriesThe Screen Machine and Macrobert Stirling.

Alice Black, DCA Dundee

There might be a wee tinge of Groundhog Day as DCA reopen our doors again. Still, nothing can dampen our excitement at welcoming audiences back for that big screen collective viewing experience only cinema can deliver. We are incredibly proud of our line-up – these are all the films we’ve been waiting patiently to share with Dundee folks.  Oscar winners (Nomadland, Minari, Judas and the Black Messiah) sit side by side with Almodovar and Tilda Swindon (The Human Voice). At the same time, new world cinema (Apples, Spring Blossoms) shares the screen with iconic John Travolta dancing to the Bee Gees in Saturday Night Fever (showing as part of DCA’s ongoing partnership with V&A Dundee to celebrate their new exhibition about nightclub design)  It is so good to be back!

Alison Strauss, Hippodrome/Hippfest, Bo’ness Scotland

Hippodrome Bo’ness: After bingeing on box sets in my sitting room for months on end I am longing to get back to the dark wood panelled auditorium, the swishing red velvet curtains, and dancing dust motes in the projection box beam.  I’m especially excited about the chance to show many of the recent award winning titles on our big screen with the brilliant new projection and sound systems and infrared assistive listening headsets that we were able to install during lockdown. Sound of Metal is our chance to showcase all that shiny new kit to its best advantage, and – to put the cherry on it – we’ve got some unusual titles lined-up, chosen by a trio of special guest curators, each bringing a unique and fresh perspective to our programme.  The opening season of the Hippodrome is definitely cinema worth waiting for!


Colin Farquhar, Belmont Picturehouse, Aberdeen

We feel fantastic that we’re finally able to get our audience back in. We’re really connected to the community in Aberdeen and we’ve missed sharing our screens with them. Can’t wait. 

We’ll be showing Chloe Zhao’s Nomadland, Sound Of Metal (all fully captioned), Ammonite, Minari and Judas and The Black Messiah in the first week so it’s a smashing line up of stuff to get going on. 

We’re just looking forward to seeing people again and them seeing us. It’s been a long old year.


Victoria Rhodes, The Phoenix Cinema, Orkney

We open our doors again on May 17th – there is a lot of excitement! We’ve tried to include something for everyone in our opening programme, with award-winners Nomadland, Minari and Sound Of Metal screening alongside Peter Rabbit 2, Wonder Woman 1984 and Godzilla Vs. Kong over the first two weeks. I’m looking forward to welcoming our customers back and seeing their reactions, there really is nothing better than sharing the love of good films on the big screen with other people.