Following a series of cancellations of both the preview night and the first two public screenings, immerse cinema group Secret Cinema cancelled in advance the first full weekend of screenings (26-27 July) of their much-hyped Back to the Future event. The entire event will possibly now not begin until July 31.
Having dismayed legions of ticket holders, many of whom proceeded to vent their rage on the event's Facebook and Twitter feeds (in some cases reaching epic proportions, as this Buzzfeed post shows), Secret Cinema founder Fabien Riggall at last gave more details on the reasons behind the delay in a BBC News interview later on Friday 25 July. Previous press releases had frustrated ticket holders with the lack of specific reasons for the delay, with everything from an unexploded WWII bomb being found in the Olympic Park area to unfinished sets and fire risks being quoted as explanations.
When asked directly why the the first run of shows had been cancelled, Riggall claimed: "What's happened is that we've been dong these events for the last 10 years [and this time] I think we've pushed it into the next phase of what Secret Cinema is. The ambition is great for this show and even though we were able to get the site ready in terms of of overall build, we've not been able to get to the point that we've needed to satisfy various parties."
By "various parties" Riggall meant the the local authority, in this case Newham Council. He went on: " Secret Cinema is a very different kind of experience to a normal concert or show, and it has taken longer to demonstrate to them so they are happy.
I've got nothing against the local authority, I know they just want to really understand the show and we're really close to that. They're being incredibly helpful and constructive. But it's difficult, it's challenging, when you're doing something new for them to understand."