Empire Cinema Mcleod Road Lahore
Empire Cinema brings you quality movies from Lollywood, Bollywood and Hollywood. Call 042-7222172 for ticketing information. Tickets available for Rs. 70-100 at the venue. Film timings 3:00 - 6:00, 6:00 - 9:00, 9:00 - 12:00. Some of the movis played in recent years are Avatar (Hollywood), Ghajni (Bollywood) and Majajan (Lollywood). Empire Cinema is one of the cinemas having digital track sound systems but due to lack of quality films Empire Cinema is the more often closed so do call before going.
Empire Cinema, Mcleod Road, Lahore, Pakistan
Lahore Cinemas Lose Audience After Terror Attack on Lankan Team courtesy thefreelibrary.com - March 23, 2009: Cinemas halls in Lahore are faring poorly following the March 3 terror attack on the Lankan cricket team.
Even hit films like 'Slumdog Millionaire' and 'Billu Barber' have not been able to pull viewers back to the cinemas.
Since the screening of Indian films has been adversely affected following the Mumbai attacks, Cinema owners believe Lollywood should introduce better films to restore its image and regain viewers, the Daily Times reports.
Most cinemas - Defence Housing Authority (DHA) Cinema, Sozo World, Plaza Cinema and Empire Cinema-complained of a lack of Bollywood movies.
They said most Indian films could not be screened in Pakistan as the government only allowed the screening of the films that were filmed outside India.
About 12 Indian films were annually aired in Pakistan, and government should either change its policy or entirely ban the screening of Indian films in Pakistan, Cinema owners said.
Most people did not want to go to cinemas anymore as they had already watched the film on television.
"That's exactly why Slumdog Millionaire did not attract as large a crowd as it should have. People had already watched it on television," a Sozo World source said.
Piracy is also giving Pakistani cinemas a tough a tough time.
"Piracy is a big issue. It must be controlled if the 'cinema culture' is to be revived," A Plaza Cinema employee said.
Pakistan Cinema Management Association claimed that several cinemas in Pakistan had already converted into plazas and restaurants.
"12 to 15 Indian films could not cater to the cinemas' demand for an entire year," Chairman Qaisar Sanaullah Khan said. (ANI).
Advent of Cable Industry Brings Doom To Cinema courtesy dailytimes.com.pk - September 22, 2005: Increasing commercial land and film prices and the advent of the cable industry are some of the contributing factors in the closure of cinemas in Pakistan.
According to a survey conducted by film experts in 1973, there were 63 cinemas in Lahore, 18 in Rawalpindi, 19 in Multan, 19 in Faisalabad, 11 in Gujranwala, 12 in Sialkot, 12 in Peshawar, 86 in Karachi, 20 in Hyderabad, six in Sukkur, and eight in Quetta.
The number has reduced to 23 in Lahore, 12 in Rawalpindi, 14 in Multan, 13 in Faisalabad, 10 in Gujranwala, eight in Sialkot, 36 in Karachi, four in Hyderabad, one in Sukkur and five in Quetta.
Pushto movies are very popular in Peshawar and the number of cinemas has not changed. There were almost 750 cinemas in Pakistan in the 70s, but the number has reduced to almost 250.
Movie experts say that most of the cinemas were built on a two to five kanals of land and the cinema owners turned them into plazas after land prices increased. Some were turned into stage theaters because of their profitability. Stage tickets are sold for Rs 250 to 300 each whereas movie tickets ranged between Rs 30 to 150 each.
Bad movie prints have wiped out cinemas in small cities. In small cities, movie distributors used to buy prints for Rs 2,000 to 10,000, depending on a movie’s standard. The cost of a print in large cities has increased to Rs 80,000 to 90,000 compared to Rs 20,000 to 25,000 in the 70s. Hence, it is no longer feasible for major distributors to sell prints to small towns distributors.
In 2002, the government withdrew 60 percent entertainment tax from movie tickets. The tickets used to cost Rs 35, inclusive of entertainment tax. After the tax was withdrawn, the government stopped regulating ticket prices and cinema owners started charging between Rs 30 and 150, depending on a movie’s popularity, making it unaffordable for lower-middle class to go to the cinema. Movie ‘Kiun tumsay itna pyar hai’ fetched Rs 16,000 in the first week when it was exhibited at Empire Cinema. The tickets were sold at Rs 80. When the same movie was shown at Odin Cinema, where a ticket was sold for Rs 30, the first week profit was Rs 60,000. A low charge for tickets lead to larger audiences.
The cable network has also lead to the downfall of the cinema. Cable programmes and movies have reduced the film audience by almost 60 percent. The viewers realised the difference between a good and a bad movie after the introduction of the cable network. High budget Indian movies, with better music and direction, decreased cinema attendance, as the families watch better movies at home. In Lahore, Garrison Cinema in Cantt, Al Mumtaz in Paki Thatti, and Ritz on Macleod Road have been demolished. Alfalah, Crown, Shama, Naz and Mehfil cinemas have been converted into theatres, while Venus Cinema might be turned into a petrol pump.
The remaining major cinemas in Lahore, including Empire, Shabistan, Prince, Gulistan, Metropol, Taj, Capital and Odin remain closed for months because of lack of films.
The industry has also played a major role in the downfall of cinemas as it keeps on producing substandard films. Repetitive themes, too much violence and vulgarity have forced the families to stop watching such films. Pakistan’s cinemas also lack the latest sound systems. In Lahore, only Empire, Metropol and Gulistan cinemas have digital track sound systems.