Bringing the Multiplex to Antwerp: A Battle of Two Giants

Kathleen Lotze

Abstract


This article investigates the introduction of the first multiplex in Antwerp, Belgium. Within Europe, Belgium has traditionally been a leader in multiplex developments. Despite Antwerp’s powerful position in terms of national film exhibition and distribution, the city’s first multiplex arrived relatively late. By investigating the struggles of two major exhibitors in the late 1980s and early 1990s, this case of Antwerp connects to findings for other countries (particularly the UK and the US) concerning the effect of multiplexes on local exhibition structures and cinemagoing practices. In addition, it demonstrates how the specific time and location of the introduction of the city’s first multiplex were dictated by the particularities of the local exhibition market, including its structure, its economic and political key players and its integration into the city’s urban infrastructure.

Keywords: multiplex; Antwerp; Belgium; film exhibition; cinema history


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ISSN: 2213-7653