By the early 1980s, Britain was viewed as a market in which the domestic
exhibition sector was in terminal decline, while at the same time being a
market in which films from the USA were both popular and dominant. This
chapter discusses the development of the multiplex cinemas in Britain from
the mid 1980s to the present. The opening of Britain's first multiplex
cinema called "The Point" in 1985 heralded a new kind of cinema.
The building of new cinemas, initially on the edges and latterly in the
centre of Britain's towns and cities, was the result of changes in
economic, political and cultural policies precipitated by both the apparent
triumph of laissez-faire capitalism and the hegemony of the Hollywood film.
Multiplexes built new audiences, the over 35-age group. The chapter also
looks at the impact of multiplex cinemas on the cinema-going audience and
the cinema industry.