Cineworld will close all of its cinemas in the UK, Ireland and US this week because of the impact of coronavirus, a Reuters news agency source has said.
It follows the announcement that upcoming Bond film No Time To Die has been pushed back to April, after it was set to appear in cinemas next month.
Earlier, The Sunday Times reported Cineworld could shut all of its 128 UK and Ireland cinemas, putting up to 5,500 jobs at risk.
The decision could be announced as early as tomorrow with the chain’s bosses preparing to write to Boris Johnson and Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden to say the industry has become “unviable”, the newspaper reports.
Cinemas were closed in March when the UK went into lockdown, but reopened in England on 4 July.
The industry has struggled during the coronavirus crisis and last month Cineworld announced half-year losses of $1.6bn (£1.3bn).
There was solid demand for Christopher Nolan’s action-thriller Tenet last month, but the postponement of the latest Bond film’s release will have been a huge knock-back for cinemas.
The film’s producers said the change was to allow it to be seen “by a worldwide theatrical audience”.