After narrowly avoiding bankruptcy in the fall, the Artis movie theater, located in downtown Tallinn's Solaris shopping mall, still faces a bleak future.
One of Tallinn's two major art-house cinemas, Artis, owned by the Estonian Film Foundation's subsidiary Tallinnfilm, has made a loss of 400,000 euros in the past two years, reported Postimees.
Owners have on numerous occassions discussed the possibility of shutting the cinema down. For now, the crisis has been solved, with the debts finally paid off to Solaris.
Artis has also cut costs, laid off four of 11 people, and began bringing in extra revenue through a coffee shop and through letting the place out for special events. But the cinema is still operating in a deficit, even though the rent it pays to Solaris is four times lower than neighboring stores.
The Culture Ministry's advisor on film, Edith Sepp, said establishing the movie theater in Solaris was a big mistake. “It was super stupidity. Why did we even go there?” Sepp said.
Yet, moving would now also be expensive and difficult due to the terms of the cinema's contract with the shopping center.