The first public cinema in Britain, the historic Regent Street Cinema reopened last night (the 6th of May) following a three year refurbishment process.
London’s first public film screening was held at the site on the 21st of February 1896 when the Lumière Brothers brought their Cinématographe show across the Channel from Paris. By accounts cinema in a capital got off to a rather slow start with only 54 customers in attendance, but the popularity of this new form of entertainment soon grew as it become incorporated into music hall programmes. The cinema was closed to the public and converted into a lecture theatre some 35 years ago by its owners the University of Westminster, now it is resurrected as a repertory cinema showcasing a carefully curated programme of contemporary independent, foreign language, and classic cinema. Continue reading