503 theaters shut down during pandemic: Minister
Some 503 private theaters have shut down as of 2021, Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy has announced in response to the parliamentary question regarding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the cinema and theater industry.
According to the data from the Culture and Tourism Ministry, only 105 of the 608 private theaters registered with the General Directorate of Fine Arts continued to conduct performances, while 503 theaters stopped their activities due to the effects of the pandemic.
Ersoy also underlined the governmental support rendered to the cinema industry, explaining that they provided financial support of nearly 96 million Turkish Liras ($5.2 million) to a total of 431 cinema projects, as per the local media.
Pointing out that nearly 16 million liras ($870,345) were given to 159 cinemas in 2021, Ersoy stated that they provided about 168 million liras ($9 million) in total for the cinema and theater industry.
The activities of all cinemas were stopped on March 16, 2020, due to the pandemic. After their reclosure on July 1 and then again on Dec. 20, 2020, cinemas restarted their activities on July 1, 2021.
While over 330 cinemas started to run during this period, nearly 400 cinemas have been continuing their activities since December 2021.