With just hours to go until launch, cinema event group Secret Cinema cancelled the first night of their large-scale Back to the Future immersive event on Thursday 24 July. No clear reasons were given. Ticket holders were offered the option of transferring, but only to later August shows. The show had been predicted to sell over 80,000 tickets and had already extended its run to 31 August, after the first wave of tickets sold out quickly. The preview night - not on sale to the general public- had according to reports already been cancelled.
On Friday afternoon, Secret Cinema announced via social media that the Friday evening event was also cancelled. No specific reason was given except "a number of issues that we have not experienced previously."
As might have been expected, the cancellations led to to waves of outrage across the Secret Cinema social media channels. Buzzfeed, with its '19 Londoners who Completely Fell to Pieces over Secret Cinema Being Cancelled' post, was just one of many sites attempting to capture a collage of this rage.
The Secret Cinema Facebook page posted this press statement for the second cancellation along with details for ticket holders to claim refunds or transfers to August dates. Again, no specifics, just more secrets.
"To all our audience,
Unfortunately we have no choice but to cancel tonight's performance.
Secret Cinema has been running safe arts events for 10 years and on this occasion we have come across a number of issues that we have not experienced previously.
The site is looking spectacular so please standby for further information about Saturday night's event.
As you can imagine we are hugely disappointed and share the immense frustration you are all feeling.
We would like to offer you tickets to another date. Should you not be able to attend you will receive a face value refund for tonight's ticket.
To reschedule your tickets or to get a refund, please contact See Tickets directly with your order number to the following email address email@example.com
- Indicate the date you would like to swap your tickets to.
- You will receive an email confirmation as soon as possible to confirm the transfer with your new tickets.
Again, we apologise for the inconvenience, and appreciate your support. We will be in touch with news as soon as this is possible and if you have any queries or concerns, please let us know on firstname.lastname@example.org"