The theatre in Burnaby's biggest mall is being swallowed by a cinema giant

A deal to buy Burnaby’s movie theatre is as good as done.

The Cineplex-owned theatre in Metropolis at Metrotown in Burnaby is part of a huge deal that’s in the final stages

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Cineplex Inc. shareholders overwhelmingly approved a $2.8-billion agreement that would see the theatre company taken over by U.K.-based Cineworld Group PLC.The Toronto-based company said Tuesday that about 99.9 per cent of its shares were voted in favour of the transaction while 99.6 per cent of Cineworld Group shareholders also provided the necessary approval.

Cineplex says it intends to apply for a final order from the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to approve the transaction next Tuesday. The transaction is expected to be completed in the first half of 2020, after which time its shares would be delisted from the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The entertainment brands revealed in mid-December that they had signed a deal where Cineworld agreed to assume Cineplex's debt and pay $34 per share in cash, amounting to a 42 per cent premium on the Toronto-based chain's closing price at the time of the announcement.

Cineworld, which bought U.S.-based Regal Entertainment Group roughly two years ago, owns 9,498 screens across 786 sites in the U.S., U.K., Ireland, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania and Israel. Cineplex would add 165 Canadian theatres and 1,695 screens to that count.

Talks between the two came as Cineplex has faced stiff competition for consumers' attention and money as streaming services have risen in popularity.

Cineplex filled roughly 77 million seats in 2015, but that number has consistently fallen since.

  • With files from the Canadian Press

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