Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) has made a new move to diversify the offering at Lord’s by launching an outdoor cinema venture at the ‘Home of Cricket’.
Sight Screen Cinema is designed to open up the historic London ground for the general public to experience Lord’s in an entirely different way.
The first year of Sight Screen Cinema is set to see 8,000 people watching the Bollywood hit ‘83’, over the weekend of July 15-16, 40 years after the historic match was played at Lord’s. The film is a biopic following the story behind India’s victory in the 1983 World Cup, led by Kapil Dev. Much of the filming took place on location at Lord’s in the summer of 2019.
Cinema goers will be able to immerse themselves in the film by watching from special areas on the outfield on the Main Ground, where much of the action took place. The film will be shown on the two LED screens attached to the recently redeveloped Compton and Edrich stands at the Nursery End of the Ground, with picnic blanket or bean bag seating on the turf.
Andy Muggleton, MCC’s commercial director, said: “There is a real wish within MCC to welcome more people to Lord’s and open up the ground to those who might not ordinarily come here. We’re very excited to launch this new venture that brings together film and sport fans for a truly immersive and unforgettable experience in our historic ground.”
Kabir Khan, director of 83, added: “Watching the final of the 1983 Cricket World Cup as a young schoolboy, I could never have imagined that more than three and a half decades later I would be recreating that iconic match in the hallowed grounds of Lord’s.
“It was one of the most exciting moments in my filming career and now, in the year of the 40th anniversary of India’s historic win we are getting to screen our film, 83, on the Lord’s turf. I cannot wait to experience the excitement of our film at the Mecca of Cricket.”
Earlier this month, it was announced that Lord’s will play host to more leading school cricket competition finals as part of a new five-year agreement that will see it continue to stage historic university and private school matches.
Following months of discussions, the MCC agreed to a five-year extension of the period in which Lord’s will host the fixtures between Oxford and Cambridge and Eton and Harrow, from 2024 onwards.
In addition, the MCC will be inviting the organisers of competitions open to all schools and all universities to stage the finals of their respective competitions in those years, starting in 2024. There had been disagreement for some time as to how the historic fixtures stood alongside many members’ desire to promote cricket as a game for all.