A venue dedicated to the seventh art will open on April 18 in Riyadh, the capital of the Wahhabi kingdom, announced Wednesday the Saudi authorities. Until now a ban on these entertainment venues was in force in the country.


Saudi Arabia has signed an agreement with the American group AMC to open 30 to 40 cinemas in some fifteen cities over the next five years. Men and women will not be separated in theaters, unlike what happens in most public places in the ultra-conservative Sunni kingdom for watch free movies website. The first  screened will be the Marvel Black Panther superhero movie , we learn from a source close to the file.

In the 1970s, the country had some cinemas but religious leaders got their closure, reflecting the rise of Islamist influence in the Arab countries at the time. The government announced last year that it would lift this ban as part of economic and social reforms led by Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman (MBS). He is currently in the United States looking for investors who would be interested in Saudi Arabia looking to diversify its economy to reduce its dependence on oil.


Despite the ban on cinemas, Saudis can already watch American movies and TV shows at home. AMC’s first cinema will be located in King Abdullah Financial District in a building originally intended to be a symphony concert hall, said AMC General Manager Adam Aron in an interview.

The main hall will have approximately 500 leather seats. Three more screens will be added this summer. Saudi Arabia, whose half of the 32 million inhabitants are under 30 years old, wants to install about 350 cinemas, or some 2,500 cinemas, by 2030 . To win the market, AMC has partnered with the directmoviedl Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF). In addition, Six Flags Entertainment announced plans to develop a Six Flags theme park in Ryad in partnership with PIF.