Nothing to throw in the towel and give up the dream of every professional who has dedicated himself to film distribution for years: his own cinema. Miguel Angel Perez At 58, he’s on the verge of fulfillment, and while the stars don’t seem to make it easy for him, the project is at a point of no return. And that they called him crazy and suicidal more often than brave.

Establishing a cinema is not his first venture. For almost 20 years, Miguel Ángel Pérez has managed a distributor that once had 25 employees. He sees his leap into the exhibition as a conservative move compared to the risk of acquiring the rights to a film that has no known how it will work. But it is not the weariness of uncertainty that has led him to a new adventure, but the illusion of a dream. Continuous closure of rooms

After more than a year of talking to real estate agents and wandering around Madrid in search of a suitable location, he finally found the ideal location and facility. In the heart of the Glorieta de Santa María de la Cabeza (Madrid), La Caixa had set up a 300 square meter shop for rent. Considering that the budget contemplated by Miguel Ángel Pérez and his partner was far from the minimum 2-3 million euros required to open a multi-room space, the space seemed to be in the Embajadores neighborhood Perfect for several reasons: firstly, because it was is a very dynamic cultural area, secondly, because there is no competition in the immediate vicinity, thirdly, because the premises are diaphanous and it is located at street level, next to few improvement works, thus reducing costs for adapting to accessibility can be avoided.

A total of 600,000 euros has been invested so far, almost 50% between own funds and bank financing. The room is divided into three projection rooms and a small hall with a bar. Since the latter seemed small to them, they also took over the adjoining premises in order to open a parallel shop, the “Kinobar”, where they want to set up a terrace.

Such were the plans and the work to be done for the final touches to open the doors of Los Cines Embajadores to the public on March 28th. But the pandemic and lockdown slowed the flow of events. Fortunately, Miguel Ángel is more than those who see the glass half full and take it easy and wait for the de-escalation.

July 3rd was set as the new date for the opening of the cinemas. The news sparked a lot of expectations and enormous interest among the residents of the neighborhood. The proof is that they had already sold all the tickets. It couldn’t be this time either. A fire that broke out in the meter room of an outbuilding around 11 a.m. left the area without power. Another postponement, and although the company was ready to return the amount of the tickets, many residents gave up this option.

Now they are preparing to open the rooms this weekend, July 10th. “Not even a catastrophe can stop us,” reads his Twitter account. With a total capacity of 200 people and the current restrictions at 75% occupancy, Miguel Ángel Pérez initially wants to limit capacity to 60%, knowing full well that “people are very afraid of contagion”.

The proposal is to provide the area with “a neighborhood cinema, but of quality”. For this, all the films on display will be shot in their original version, with a focus on European, national and auteur cinema, “but without forgetting American commercial cinema, which also has great works”. He knows the industry like no other and believes in it. He knows the continued closures of theaters in recent years have been driven by speculation rather than customer requests, and he’s prepared to accommodate them barring disaster strikes.

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