Quentin Tarantino has predicted that "boutique" film-watching experiences will become increasingly popular post-Covid after buying up one of Hollywood’s best loved cinemas.
The "Pulp Fiction" director also warned that cinemas have been "writing their own epitaph" and some "deserve to go."
His comments came as Hollywood struggles to recover from the pandemic.
He said the "specialness" of the movie experience had been undermined and there was a need to encourage people out of their living rooms and back to theatres.
Tarantino recently bought the iconic Vista Theatre in Los Angeles and said "boutique" cinemas like it would flourish in the future.
He told the Armchair Expert podcast: "Some of these exhibitors that are going – I never like to see any movie theatre closing – but some of these exhibitors who are going, they f—ing deserve to go.
"They have taken all the specialness out of movies anyway. Some of these [cinema] chains, where they’re showing commercials all through it, they don’t turn the lights down, everything is stadium seating, plastic s—.
"They have been writing their own epitaph for a long time. But they assumed the business would take you along. It’s been crazy, throughout my career, to see how the cinema experience is lessened for the viewer like every five years."
He said the answer was not to introduce comfy chairs and margaritas, adding: "I got a living room. I want to go to the theatre."
Under his ownership the Vista, which first opened in 1923, will show movies on 35mm film.
Across the United States cinemas shut down for months during the pandemic and some have not reopened.
In addition to chains, the permanent closures included the iconic Cinerama Dome on Sunset Boulevard, which featured in Tarantino’s "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood", and the Arclight Hollywood cinema, which was popular with film industry professionals.
In 2020 box office takings in North America were $2.1 billion, down over 80 per cent from $11.3 billion in 2019.
Employment in the film and music industries in Los Angeles fell from 152,500 in February 2020 to 92,000 in January 2021.
Film production is now springing back to life and studios plan to release a flood of superhero movies, at least 16 of them, by the end of 2022.
However, a recent survey of people who go to the cinema at least once a year found only 57 per cent intended to visit one in the near future.
The first Marvel superhero movie to be released in the wake of the pandemic – "Black Widow" starring Scarlett Johansson – was out this weekend.
Hollywood was watching closely to see if it would draw back audiences, and it was hoped the film would be the most popular of 2021 so far.