Cineworld Cinema - Leicester Square

5 Leicester Square,
London, WC2H 7NA

Unfavorite 41 people favorited this theater

Showing 101 - 125 of 718 comments

LARGE_screen_format on July 1, 2018 at 4:49 am


I’ve posted a reply on the Odeon, Greenwich page.

I did enjoy Rampage for what it was, a movie based on a video game, it had some good action and overall was entertaining.

CF100 on June 30, 2018 at 6:16 pm


The stadia which all but the front row of the LSQ IMAX seats are attached date from 1962, being the former “circle” seating area of Empire 1.

As theatreofvarieties kindly indicated on Cinema Treasures, in response to my tedious queries, the HVAC (air conditioning) extraction ducting is actually connected to lots of grilles behind the seating, although presumably the extract ducts could always be moved elsewhere or reconnected.

Looking at one of Zappomatic’s photos taken during the recent foyer refurbishment, which provides a partial view under the stadia, it’s clear that there is plenty of steel there, albeit I have no idea what materials are used to form the stepping itself.

Given the above, the fact that Cineworld (presumably) kept the existing intact in the foyer refurbishment works might suggest that there they have no intention of changing the stepping.

If it could be changed from above, it might difficult from a health and safety point of view, and could risk damage to the services and ceiling below.

I suppose they could, depending on structural (weight) limitations, build off the existing, but then this would presumably require the loss of half the rows?

So, based on the above uninformed brain dump and a lot of speculation on my part, it would appear to be a non-starter.

BTW: Photo of the IMPACT/Superscreen auditorium build – stadium seating structure can be seen. Note that the steel girder supporting the balcony is actually hung from the roof structure!

Did you enjoy “Rampage”?

I haven’t been to the Greenwich Odeon since it was “the filmworks”—not difficult for me to get to but AFAIK, as you mention, the IMAX auditorium has a relatively small sized screen; with the BFI and now the Leicester Square IMAX also easy for me to get to, it doesn’t seem worth the bother.

IMO it wasn’t worth visiting when it was “the filmworks,” very much a run of the mill multiplex; albeit, for better or worse, it was one of the earliest examples of an all-“black box” auditoria location in this country.

The last time I purchased food at a cinema was flavoured popcorn at the Odeon Leicester Square in the late 90s. Stopping by Five Guys before or after the performance is a better option in my view. ;–)

LARGE_screen_format on June 30, 2018 at 4:42 pm

Highly unlikely to happen but I wish Cineworld would upgrade the seats in the LSQ IMAX auditoria to luxury leather recliners. A number of Odeon Luxe and Showcase de Luxe cinemas across the country have or are being upgraded to those so why can’t/shouldn’t Cineworld’s ‘flagship’ cinema be able to match those?

I watched Rampage in IMAX at Odeon, Greenwich. Not the largest IMAX screen but was passing the area with a friend of mine who had never been to this cinema and I had often mentioned it having watched many movies there in the mid 00’s (before IMAX was installed). Odeon’s food offering there is significantly better than that found at Cineworld, Empire or Vue cinemas imo.

CF100 on June 30, 2018 at 4:27 pm

Hmm… it might. In my view the LSQ IMAX is currently the best cinema in the West End—not necessarily in terms of programming but as a cinema, i.e. overall package of comfort (legroom issue isn’t a massive problem for me,) outstanding picture quality, middle row seat positioning in relation to the screen, and very good sound also, plus some of the spacious scale and other memories of the old Empire 1 are still there.

However, the concept I have in mind as far as the “première” auditoria are concerned is to be able to see the same film in multiple “premium” formats rather than, say, having to choose between Superscreen/Atmos and IMAX with Laser. Paying the “normal” price for tickets, particularly if the 4DX is included also, starts to become absurd.

The annual cost of the Unlimited West End card still pays for lots of IMAX tickets per year, so, on that basis alone it’s perhaps slightly hard to justify. But then I could see, say, “Rampage” in the IMAX screen… just for the sake of it.

Also, I quite like the idea of cinema trips being special events rather than multiple visits to see whatever in whatever auditorium, which could dilute the experience?

What can I say… I’m just dreadfully slow when it comes to mulling over purchases in excess of three figures… and my number one priority this week by a country mile was getting my air conditioner reinstated at home. :–)

LARGE_screen_format on June 30, 2018 at 3:08 pm

If there was no uplift charge for IMAX (rather than Superscreen) would you be asking Cineworld to take your money (for an Unlimited West End card)? ;o)

CF100 on June 30, 2018 at 2:09 pm

Can’t speak for Cineworld but pretty obviously if you’re rebranding/resigning all the foyer/lobby/access areas then that provides an opportunity to tidy things up by renumbering.

With all incremental changes made over the years including additional auditoria the cinema has become something of a maze, and introducing a 4DX screen only adds to the potential confusion.

The current scheme makes sense in that, from the top of the vestibule stairs up from the Leicester Square entrance, turn left for Screens 1-3, all sequential along the left side of the foyer, and turn right for 5-7, all at upper levels.

That then leaves 4 as the odd one out among 4/8/9 among screens that are normally referenced by “brand name,” but at least the 4DX can’t be confused with another Screen 4.

Other permutations can be thought of that might work, but I think that Cineworld have chosen the best option.

Leaflets promoting the “Unlimited” card were being handed out outside Cineworld (Empire) Leicester Square today; I asked the person handing them out what the uplift charge was for the IMAX, and they told me that it is £7. (Perhaps I should “get with it” and use “social media?!”)

LARGE_screen_format on June 30, 2018 at 4:09 am

Wonder what the thinking behind renumbering the screen numbers is?

CF100 on June 26, 2018 at 11:42 am

A building control application for the current phase of works, dated as received 25th June 2018, is now listed on Westminster’s site.

The description field contains: “Refurbishment of cinemas 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 7 (small auditoria) of multiplex cinema. The refurbishment involves adjustment of stadia construction (1, 2, 5, 6 and 7), change of floor finishes, new illuminated nosing on the steps, adjustment of speakers, and installation of new seats.”

It will be interesting to see if the IMAX/Superscreen will be overhauled this year in a further phase of works or if, as a member of staff told me, Cineworld have no plans for this at the present time.

CF100 on June 25, 2018 at 4:47 pm

Zappomatic: Thanks for the updates!

Good to hear the “cine-flies” (“Flies More at Cineworld”?) are being kept at bay!

Shame there’s no photos of the access to Screen 3 before it was given a makeover.

By the sounds of it Screen 3 won’t be left with many seats after the impending overhaul!

Zappomatic on June 25, 2018 at 10:27 am

Screen 7 (formerly screen 9) reopens on Friday with 31 seats across three rows in a single block, down from 42 and has lost the two rather odd pairs of seats tucked away in alcoves on either side of the auditorium.

Screen 3 (formerly 6) has its final performance before closing for refurbishment on Thursday.

Zappomatic on June 21, 2018 at 10:53 am

I don’t think any of the projection or audio equipment has been upgraded in screen 1 but it was perfectly fine – picture was in focus with no distortion and acceptable (but not outstanding) brightness and contrast, and the sound pleasingly punchy.

I’ve not noticed any cine-flies of late! I hope when screen 5 is refurbished the projector is looked at or replaced as in the last few months it seemed to have some convergence issues.

In other news the staircase to screen 3 is in the process of being refurbished, with new signage and grey walls, and new carpet on the stairs (landings retain the existing red carpet for now). The existing lighting has been retained, and the yellow halo cast by the wall lights looks a bit strange against the grey. The delightful aroma of urine remains!

CF100 on June 20, 2018 at 7:22 pm

That was quick!

First performance is “Solo: A Star Wars Story” at 11:40am.

Maybe they’ve eliminated the back row as the licensing plans (for the original Empire fit-out) show 14 seats in the last row with no space to spare, whilst the new seating arrangement has 15 seats.

(The auditorium narrows to the back with an angled right sidewall, the space being used for access to Screen 5 (formerly 7.))

If that’s the case then were they to lose another couple of seats, this would enable the left sidewall to be altered, thereby creating a symmetrical auditorium. Alas, I doubt Cineworld are thinking in terms of symmetrical rear array speaker layouts in a small auditorium!

Look forward to updates on the “flies inside projector box” situation. ;–)

P.S. Forgot to ask — how was the picture and sound quality in the refurbished Screen 1?

Zappomatic on June 17, 2018 at 9:22 am

Screen 6 reopens on Thursday, with seating capacity reduced from 48 to 38, across three rows (previously four).

Zappomatic on June 5, 2018 at 8:14 am

I did clock that socket but fortunately my phone had enough juice!

The seats in the back row closest to the projector have their own special amenity in that the rails next to them make a great place to hang coats and the floor space behind them is perfect for storing shopping bags. :)

CF100 on June 5, 2018 at 5:59 am

Zappomatic: The side surrounds are visible in your photos, easier to see with some basic adjustments, e.g. increasing the brightness or gamma curve.

A double mains socket can also be seen on the right sidewall, perfect for charging your phone during the feature! (Just kidding.)

Zappomatic on June 5, 2018 at 4:24 am

Correction: side surrounds are not embedded in the walls but it does highlight that lighting levels during trailers are low enough that they can’t be seen.

Oddly there are no letters to indicate the rows.

Zappomatic on June 5, 2018 at 4:06 am

Screen 1 is now looking very smart and the new layout works well. Black carpet as seen elsewhere in this cinema and brass handrails but the rest of it follows Cineworld’s current fit-out with Black wall coverings and a red strip of LEDs around the wall above handrail height, and red Lino Sonego seating. The auditorium has been re-stepped more steeply so that heads don’t get in the way however this does mean that the two middle seats in the back row are missing because of the projector overhead. Seats don’t recline but are very comfortable and the legroom is vastly improved. Rows have a hard floor rather than carpet which will be easier to clean.

Screen does not appear to have adjustable masking and no longer has the red LED surround. Surround speakers are hidden in the walls.

Lighting levels in the screen are suitable low, with the honeycomb filters as seen in the upper screens at the O2. Photos to be uploaded shortly!

CF100 on June 4, 2018 at 2:35 pm

Zappomatic: Extreme minutiae is exactly what I like. ;–)

Thanks for the update on the ongoing refurb.

Zappomatic on June 4, 2018 at 2:04 pm

Screen 1 and 2 now bookable.

Screen 1 (formerly 5) has 44 seats across 4 rows Screen 2 has (formerly 4) has 78 seats across 5 rows

Going by the numbers on Empire Cinemas' orphaned webpages this is a reduction of 4 and 16 seats respectively. It looks as though screen 1’s layout has changed. Previously it had a single centre aisle but now has aisles on either end of the rows. Strangely the middle two seats of the back row are missing – shame to lose these as they had limitless legroom, but a smart move I think as viewing from the ends of the rows (particularly house right due to the screen not being centred) wasn’t great.

Nothing programmed for screens 5-7 tomorrow onwards.

Zappomatic on June 4, 2018 at 1:17 pm

I realise this is in the realms of extreme minutiae, but given all internal signage installed by Empire Cinemas has been replaced (even in non-refurbished areas such as access to screens 6-9) regardless of whether it was branded, I was rather surprised to notice that the sign to the toilets as you exit the Superscreen appears to have been missed!

CF100 on June 4, 2018 at 11:14 am

LARGE_screen_format: The cinema was closed in January of this year to strip out the foyer and to get it to a state which allowed for ongoing building works whilst keeping the cinema open to the public.

The former Screen 2 had been stripped by the end of August 2017 according to the member of staff I spoke to at that time.

With the public areas of the main foyer and vestibule from Leicester Square and the 4DX complete Cineworld publicised the changes they’d made in April 2018—e.g.YouTube Video of Gala Opening.

AFAIK the former Screens 4/5 (now 1 and 2) are still closed at the moment, see Zappomatic’s photo into the former Screen 4 in a stripped state.

No idea what further phases Cineworld have planned but the information I had last month from talking to a member of staff was that Cineworld weren’t planning on doing anything to the IMAX and Superscreen at the moment as the conversion of the old Screen 1 was completed at a time that is still fairly recent.

CF100 on June 4, 2018 at 10:43 am

joeswin: The signage illumination and the LED colour dot matrix display certainly need attention as they’re not working properly anymore!

(Albeit IMO the current canopy always looked dreadful…!)

No planning application for a replacement (or alterations to the existing) are listed at the moment.

The 2006 planning application for the existing canopy and signage.

As can be seen from this application, it was made on behalf of London Clubs Management. The cinema is sublet from the Casino who hold the head lease (building owned by London and Regional Properties)—no idea what the arrangements are but it might reasonably be surmised that Cineworld can’t redo the canopy/signage unilaterally.

There is a building control application dated March 2017 for a full refubishment of the Casino. That scheme doesn’t seem to have been taken forward but it might be the case that an overhaul is in the pipeline.

From my previous post linking to a conceptual proposal for complete redevelopment of the Empire site by London and Regional Properties, the casino is branded as “Caesars Palace” in the drawings of the facade and as Caesars Entertainment now operate the casino it might be the case that any replacement would take that name along with Cineworld branding.

IOW, I’d guess a refresh is due but not just yet…

joeswin on June 4, 2018 at 6:31 am

Do you think they plan on renewing the canopy and signage outside the cinema, its starting to look quite shabby especially as Vue and Odeon have, or are currently updating theirs?

LARGE_screen_format on June 3, 2018 at 11:02 am

So part of the reason that Cineworld Empire, Leicester Square was closed briefly at the start of 2018 was to convert one of the auditoriums to 4DX and make changes to the main foyer area? Any other changes?

Have watched a number of movies at this flagship cinema over the past three decades and there have certainly been a number of changes made internally over that period.

Looking forward to the next visit…

CF100 on May 27, 2018 at 4:10 am

The Wurlitzer Organ of the Empire Leicester Square Installed at the Home of Mr. Len Rawle.

A few facts according to this document:

  • Shipped from the factory on the 11th August 1928.
  • Weight: 20 tons.
  • Largest 4 manual organ in Europe at the time.