Cineworld Empire Leicester Square

5 Leicester Square,
London, WC2H 7NA

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Showing 1 - 25 of 403 comments

zappomatic on August 12, 2016 at 12:13 pm

Slightly odd experience during the brand changeover! A few Cineworld banners but everything else still says Empire. Kiosk still selling the old Empire menu and brands eg. Pepsi instead of Coke. Staff still getting to grips with systems. Ads from Pearl & Dean instead of DCM and no Cineworld indents at all.

Weirdest thing was anyone could just wander in from the street and into the screens without having their ticket checked!

MovieGeek2013 on August 10, 2016 at 5:52 am

They have already renamed the impact screen to Superscreen on their website.

CF100 on August 10, 2016 at 1:40 am

Expect the IMPACT screen to be rebranded “Superscreen”.

zappomatic on August 9, 2016 at 4:34 pm

Cineworld page now up and booking open.

CF100 on August 9, 2016 at 1:50 pm

Blurb on Cineworld’s corporate site

This says: “No further material capex is required due to the investment in the portfolio in recent years, and all the multiplexes are modern with state of the art equipment.”

Cineworld FAQ on the acquired cinemas

Facebook page is up

The Facebook About page says “Welcome to the official Facebook page for Cineworld Cinemas Leicester Square at the Empire Theatre in London.”

Ambak, AFAIK the freehold of the building is owned by London and Regional Property, who acquired it from First Leisure (operators of the “Equinox” nightclub formerly below the cinema.) IIRC it was sold to Mecca by MGM before the 1962 reconstruction. (Incidentally, my previous research reveals that Mecca’s original plans may have been to completely replace the existing building.)

They will presumably remove “EMPIRE” sign on the marquee as that’s Empire Cinemas' logo but not cover over the “EMPIRE THEATRE” letting at the top of the facade.

HowardBHaas, absolutely, it is THE Empire!

HowardBHaas on August 9, 2016 at 9:50 am

the Haymarket could be called the Empire Haymarket. The Empire is always the Empire & it would be sacrilege to remove that name. They can call it the Cineworld Empire. I am American but visit every year.

Ambak on August 9, 2016 at 9:18 am

As far as rebranding is concerned, the entire building is called the Empire and Cineworld only own (or lease) the cinema part. I can’t imagine that the Empire name will come off of the frontage. If so, what do Empire Cinemas call the Haymarket cinema? Maybe they can go back to calling it the Carlton.

davepring on August 4, 2016 at 5:21 am

as much as I dislike Cineworld they do invest in their newer properties and the Empire we all loved so much as a 1300 seater was never going to work longterm.

Empire_fan on August 4, 2016 at 2:47 am

empire guts and slaughterers Empire 1, into the video theme park and now their brought out. I knew they wouldn’t last long as the shame of destroying a proper sized cinema into half pint.

zappomatic on August 3, 2016 at 3:57 pm

Last day as part of the Empire chain will be 11 August 2016

FanaticalAboutOdeon on August 3, 2016 at 3:55 pm

That’s a thought. The Casino at the Cineworld doesn’t have the same ring, even were it to be allowed! Perhaps “The Casino in Leicester Square” now that “Casino” has lost its link with Cinerama and the Prince Edward Theatre! Sadly, the 1,300+ Empire One will never return so, as you say, neither will I.

CF100 on August 3, 2016 at 3:22 pm

Rebranding hitch: the Casino is called ‘The Casino at the Empire’…

CF100 on August 3, 2016 at 3:01 pm

At least the Empire/Cineworld Leicester Square should have more ‘pull’ to get bookings.

There’s certainly scope for improving the IMPACT screen.

My comment was as much about maintaining (and respecting the heritage of) the foyer areas, customer service, etc.

It doesn’t sound like you’ll be back unless Screen 1 is reinstated complete with plaster tiles and cold cathode lighting!

FanaticalAboutOdeon on August 3, 2016 at 1:32 pm

Don’t think Cineworld could make the Empire Leicester Square any worse than it is now. I’ve certainly seen my last film there – one visit since twinning Empire One was more than enough. Given that Picturehouse Central ultimately belongs to Cineworld and that the largest auditorium there is most impressive with its extremely comfortable seats, strikingly colourful curtains and huge screen, perhaps the Empire/Cineworld Leicester Square is in relatively safe hands.

CF100 on August 3, 2016 at 11:47 am

Good grief, I’m almost as shocked as when it was announced that Screen 1 was to close!

Let’s hope Cineworld maintain the Empire LS as a first rate venue.

Regarding Bromley, last time I checked there were plans for a multiscreen cinema as part of a ‘mixed-use’ (ugh) development to replace a multi-storey car park, and plans to build a small multiscreen ‘arthouse’ cinema as part of a development on the roof (currently parking) of the Intu Bromley (previously known as ‘The Glades’) shopping mall. Surprised that the former Odeon Bromley isn’t due to be knocked down and turned into another oversized block of flats.

Ian on July 29, 2016 at 6:50 am

The main screen at the Haymarket Carlton is one of the most attractive in the West End now, but there are lots of unused areas in the building that could have small screens squeezed into them, and the two lower screens could be rebuilt without loss.

FanaticalAboutOdeon on July 29, 2016 at 6:10 am

Almost as intriguing as recent politics! Certainly slimming down the Empire circuit somewhat. Looks like Bromley is to acquire a Picturehouse then while, doubtless, Empire will be working out how to turn the tripled erstwhile Carlton Haymarket into a ten screen multihash!

davepring on July 29, 2016 at 5:15 am

Well my guess was wrong!! in a swap deal the Haymarket cinema will become an Empire to maintain a west end presence. Cineworld were keen to have a large West End venue following the closure of the Trocadero site and to compete with the AMC owned Odeon which hopefully will get a much needed internal refurb.

davepring on July 29, 2016 at 4:46 am

it has bought 5 Empire cinemas one of which a previous 4 screen odeon will be rebranded as a Picturehouse. I am guessing the Haymarket venue will close.

FanaticalAboutOdeon on July 28, 2016 at 5:07 am

That’s extremely interesting Dave. Have Cineworld acquired the Empire chain or just the Leicester Square venue, do you know?

davepring on July 28, 2016 at 2:43 am

The Empire has today been bought by Cineworld…..I do hope they keep the Empire name but I am guessing it will be rebranded leaving only The Odeon with its original name

CF100 on March 7, 2016 at 1:35 pm

FanaticalAboutOdeon: The “new” Warner West End had a good standard of presentation, including as you say the “gold” tabs, and I had many enjoyable trips there. I’m not sure the others of that generation were of the same standard—the one at Lakeside Shopping Centre in Thurrock, for instance, was unimpressive. (Can’t remember if the tabs were in use?)

By the late 1990s, new (by then Warner Village) builds were of the “box” design with wall-to-wall screens and stadium seating (and, for some reason, inferior KCS speakers instead of JBL.) If I remember correctly, tabs had been dispensed with.

A real shame Odeon have stopped installing tabs—it hardly does Odeon’s proud design heritage justice! The streamline moderne Odeons are to my mind the canonical example of “what a cinema should look like.”

FanaticalAboutOdeon on March 7, 2016 at 11:00 am

The Cannon/MGM/Virgin/UGC/Cineworld (!) in Southampton’s Harbourside Leisure area opened in 1989 as a five screen multiplex and all screens then had tabs which were out of use by the time Virgin’s brief sojourn into the cinema business took place. All Odeon’s multiplexes, when new, were fitted out with tabs until just a few years ago when the Circuit’s new-builds began to appear with just naked screens for the first time.

FanaticalAboutOdeon on March 7, 2016 at 10:41 am

CF100 Warner Village Cinemas U.K. multiplexes were all fitted out from new with gold screen tabs – side opening in their larger auditoria and festoon in the smaller ones. This included the “new” Warner, Leicester Square. I believe all tabs in their multiplexes were out of use within a few years although not usually removed for several more years.