THE two cinemas and Imax screen at the National Media Museum are to be operated by Picturehouse Cinemas from this month, in a bid to boost audience figures and revenue.

The new partnership - Picturehouse at National Media Museum - will see Picturehouse taking over the Museum's three screens; the 300-seat Pictureville, which Oscar-winning film producer Lord Puttnam once described as ‘the best cinema in the world’, the 100-seat Cubby Broccoli Cinema and Europe’s first IMAX screen. The partnership begins on October 31.

The opening of Imax space epic Interstellar on November 7 will celebrate the Museum’s historic role in introducing the Imax format to the UK, and its status as one of the few ‘true’ Imax 70mm film cinemas in the world.

Later in November the Museum will play a key role in the release of Hockney, an acclaimed documentary offering an intimate portrayal of David Hockney. Unprecedented access to the Bradford-born artist's personal archive footage gives an insight into how his home city helped carve out his creative journey. The film will launch with a special preview at Picturehouse at the Museum, followed by a live Q&A with David Hockney by satellite from his LA studio on Tuesday, November 28.

Museum director Jo Quinton-Tulloch said: “Film and cinematography are key chapters in the story that this Museum tells. Our partnership with Picturehouse Cinemas will ensure the long-term sustainability of cinema on this site - in the heart of UNESCO’s first City of Film in Bradford. The marketing reach and expertise of Picturehouse will help deliver an increase in audiences and revenue for the Museum. And investment in technology and facilities will deliver an even wider programme of film and a better experience for our visitors.”

Lyn Goleby, Managing Director of Picturehouse Cinemas said: “The National Media Museum is an incredibly important part of cinema geography and cinema heritage in the UK and we are very much looking forward to becoming part of its future. The Museum has always been at the forefront of cinema technology and we will make sure that continues. We will work very hard to ensure that the cinema is successful and contributes to Bradford’s status as a UNESCO City of Film."

Last week the Telegraph & Argus reported that the National Media Museum had secured a £1million cash injection from Bradford Council to help secure its future. Council bosses also challenged Culture Minister Ed Vaizey to provide some funding for the city-centre attraction too.

The Media Museum fought off a closure threat last year thanks to a major public campaign, but bosses accepted that it had to change to remain viable.