Blackpool’s new Backlot IMAX Cinema open for business

Today marks the grand opening of The Backlot Cinema & Diner, located in Houndshill Shopping Centre’s new extension.

The unique destination promises to re-define the cinematic experience and bring the very best entertainment to the heart of the local community.

The multi-screen cinema and diner, a pivotal part of the town’s major regeneration project, will be an experience like no other. The cinematic wonderland will go beyond showcasing the latest Hollywood releases, by offering a diverse selection of films from arthouse titles, family favourites and timeless silver screen classics.

The Backlot boasts Lancashire’s only IMAX® screen and one of the largest in the North West -standing at a gigantic 10.85m tall and 19.87m wide. The location is equipped with IMAX with Laser, IMAX’s most immersive theatrical experience. Immersive by design, IMAX with Laser has been developed from the ground-up to deliver crystal clear, lifelike images and precision audio for a movie-going experience unlike no other.

Designed to be a vibrant arts and entertainment hub, The Backlot is equipped with cutting-edge technology to host live gaming tournaments and corporate conferences. There will also be regular events, such as comedy nights, film festivals, diner and movie packages, and local community meet ups, which will ensure that it becomes a cultural focal point for both local residents and Blackpool tourists.

Complementing the big screen, The Backlot’s 100-seater diner will serve fresh burgers, hotdogs and sticky wings, along with a delicious range of desserts, including American-style thick pancakes, indulgent sundaes and thick milkshakes.

Cllr Lynn Williams, Leader of Blackpool Council, said: “We are delighted to see the brand-new, state-of-the-art cinematic experience open for all to enjoy, and have no doubt it will be popular with people of all ages, from both near and far. The Backlot Cinema and Diner hosts one of the largest IMAX screens in the North West, showcasing blockbuster films through immersive experiences – an offer that is currently unique across Lancashire and great for our town.

‘’Blackpool is fast becoming a destination for premium entertainment and events, providing local residents and visitors the opportunity to extend visiting time into the evening with a varied, family friendly offer. 2024 is set to be a landmark year for Blackpool, with a number of key projects reaching completion. The fantastic multi-cinema complex forms part of our wider regeneration plan – to boost the economy, create more opportunities for work and provide a wide-ranging entertainment and leisure offer the whole family can enjoy.”

The Backlot’s founder and owner, John Sullivan said: "As we unveil The Backlot, our vision is to create not just a cinema but a cultural haven for the Blackpool community. ‘’We believe in crafting an immersive experience that goes beyond the screen, inviting our customers to indulge in the magic of cinema with a completely bespoke programme and a delicious diner.

‘’The Backlot is a celebration of art, entertainment, and the vibrant spirit of Blackpool. Our brilliant team is ready to deliver a truly exceptional 5-star experience, where every visit will be a feast for the senses."

Giovanni Dolci, Chief Sales Officer at IMAX said: “We’re thrilled to unveil the first IMAX location in Lancashire at The Backlot in Blackpool this month. The UK is a top five global box office market for IMAX, and we can’t wait to bring fans in the country an all-new, world-class movie-going experience.”

The Backlot Cinema & Diner opens its doors in Blackpool today, Friday 22 March 2024.

The overall scheme has been facilitated by £5m of funding from the government’s COVID-19 Getting Building Fund, following formal approval by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP) in October 2020.

Blackpool Council funded the balance of the scheme through prudential borrowing. Further information about the Getting Building Fund.

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