The company's board has decided to suspend the payment of the 2019 fourth-quarter dividend of 4.25c per share and upcoming 2020 quarterly dividends.
Cineworld says it will suspend dividend payments and top executives have "voluntarily" agreed to defer salary and bonus payments amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The London-headquartered company, the world's second biggest cinema chain, has closed all of 787 sites in 10 countries as the world grapples with limiting the spread of COVID-19.
Cineworld's board have decided to suspend payment of the 2019 fourth quarter dividend of 4.25c per share and upcoming 2020 quarterly dividends and the company's executive directors have voluntarily deferred salary and bonus payments. Non-executive directors will also defer their fees.
The company said that the suspension of the dividend and the salary deferments would be an attempt to conserve cash at this perilous moment and it welcomed government backed initiatives to support jobs.
Cineworld added that it will continue to monitor its planned purchase of Cineplex.
It is the latest media and entertainment giant to unveil such measures.
Exhibition giant Cinemark also said on March 30 that CEO Mark Zoradi and the cinema chain's board of directors would be forgoing their salaries amid the virus crisis, while also mandating deep pay reductions for all U.S. corporate employees.
Police in Crowley, Louisiana have issued an apology for using the siren heard in “The Purge” to signal the 9pm local time curfew that has been put into effect in the city because of the coronavirus outbreak via NME. The curfew prohibits citizens from leaving their homes between the local hours of 9pm and 6am. The police department said the curfew went into place because the city is located in the state’s Acadia Parish, which has “received the worst rating for the rapid spread of the virus. It has been put into place in order to try and slow the spread.” Police are giving citations to people who violate the curfew. People traveling to or from work must have documentation from their employer.
An alarm used by police at the beginning of the month was the same alarm heard in “The Purge,” James DeMonaco’s 2013 horror thriller about a fictional America where for one night it becomes legal to commit any crimes, including murder, for a 12-hour period. The alarm in “The Purge” is heard to signal that the killing and crime sprees can begin. The first “Purge” film starred Ethan Hawke and launched a franchise that includes three follow-up movies and a series on USA Network.
Crowley Police chief Jimmy Broussard said in a statement to the local ABC news affiliate KATC that he was unaware the signal being used for the coronavirus curfew was the same signal heard in “The Purge.” The chief assured citizens that the “Purge” siren would not be used again. The siren caused enough of a stir that an additional statement was released by Acadia Parish sheriff K.P. Gibson.
“Last night a ‘Purge Siren’ was utilized by the Crowley Police Department as part of their starting curfew,” the statement said. “We have received numerous complaints with the belief that our agency was involved in this process. We were not involved in the use of the ‘Purge Siren’ and will not utilize any type of siren for this purpose. Calls regarding this matter should be directed to the Crowley Police and Chief Broussard and not the Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office.”
Universal Pictures is scheduled to release the next “Purge” movie in theaters this summer, but the film is likely to be delayed because of the coronavirus. The studio was not involved in the Crowley police department’s use of “The Purge” siren.