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First movie theatre in Saudi Arabia inaugurated

Located in Riyadh’s King Abdulla Financial District, Saudi Arabia's first cinema hosted a special screening of the Hollywood film Black Panther

Saudi's first cinema has been inaugurated [image: Arabian Business].
Saudi's first cinema has been inaugurated [image: Arabian Business].

After more than 30 years, a movie screening was held in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Located in Riyadh’s King Abdulla Financial District, the country’s first cinema was inaugurated yesterday by Saudi’s Minister of Culture and Information, Awwad Alawwad.

The 600-seat auditorium hosted a special screening of the Hollywood film Black Panther, state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported, adding that three more film screens will be inaugurated in Q3 2018 at the district.

READ: Saudi Arabia's Six Flags theme park to open in 2022

Earlier this month, it was announced that up to 40 cinemas will be built in Saudi Arabia over the next five years as part of an agreement signed between the country's Public Investment Fund (PIF) and the US-headquartered AMC.

Commenting on the cinema’s inauguration, Alawwad said: "We are all happy on this historic day as it is witnessing the screening of the first cinema film in the Kingdom, in a complex equipped with all the [technologies] and equipment that provide pleasure for the family, pointing out that what is achieved today is the result of a joint effort thanks to HRH the Crown Prince.

“Citizens and expatriates will see more showrooms that offer new entertainment options in all regions of the Kingdom.”

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He continued: "This is a true beginning for the development of the entertainment sector in general and the film industry in particular. It is not only a leisure initiative, it is an economic stimulus and a catalyst for growth and diversity of economy.”

Quoting the Minister, SPA noted that the inauguration reflects the start of the “development of the entertainment sector in general and the film industry, in particular, in order to promote cultural and media work”.

Public movie screenings were banned in Saudi Arabia in the 1980s, according to a Time report.

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