Photos: Tour forgotten single-screen cinemas from across India

Photographer Hemant Chaturvedi has been on the road for two years, shooting single-screen cinema halls as they stand, neglected and

Updated on Jul 11, 2021 03:02 PM IST 8 Photos

Inside the Capitol Theatre in Mumbai. Between the strains of competing with multiplexes and streaming platforms, and now the pressures of Covid-19, it is likely that many single-screens that hung on until 2019 will now never reopen.(Photo by Hemant Chaturvedi)

At the abandoned Empire Theatre in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh. India had about 20,000 operational single-screen cinemas in 2000. By 2019, that number had dwindled to just over 6,000.(Photo by Hemant Chaturvedi)

The overgrown sign for the abandoned Empire Theatre in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh. Chaturvedi has photographed over 650 single-screen cinemas across 500 towns so far.(Photo by Hemant Chaturvedi)


A lone attendant sits on a deserted red carpet, while the stars look down silently from their posters, at Nishat Talkies, Mumbai.(Photo by Hemant Chaturvedi)

The imposing façade of Shah Cinema, Srinagar. The grand architecture of India’s surviving single-screens is evocative, Chaturvedi says, both for the grandeur it once represented and the unforgiving manner in which the world has moved on.(Photo by Hemant Chaturvedi)