Coronavirus Outbreak: Los Angeles movie theatres to remain shut; most chains hope for a July reopening
Movie theatres closed their doors around the world in mid-March to help curb the spread of the coronavirus
Los Angeles County officials said on Wednesday that movie and TV production could resume on Friday, but movie theatres in the biggest market in the United States must remain closed because of the coronavirus pandemic.
California state officials said earlier this week that movie theatres could reopen as early as Friday, pending approval from local officials, with attendance capped at 25% of capacity and other hygiene and social-distancing protocols.
Movie theatres closed their doors around the world in mid-March to help curb the spread of the coronavirus , and movie and television production also ground to a halt.
In a press release on Wednesday, Los Angeles County said that while day camps, museums, hotels, and gyms could reopen as soon as Friday, movie theatres would remain closed.
Officials did not say why. They announced 61 new deaths from coronavirus in the county, bringing the total to 2,768 deaths and 67,064 positive cases.
Television and film production, much of it centered in the Los Angeles area, can restart under guidelines drawn up by an industry-wide task force. They include extensive coronavirus testing and daily symptom checks for actors and crew members.
Despite the green light, production on most Hollywood films and television shows is not expected to resume until September.
Hollywood movie studios have been hoping that enough theatres will be open to hold a late-summer blockbuster season. AT&T Inc’s Warner Bros. currently plans to release Christopher Nolan’s thriller Tenet on 17 July, and Walt Disney Co aims to debut the action movie Mulan on 24 July.
AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc, the world’s largest movie theatre operator, said on Tuesday it was expecting to reopen almost all its US and UK theatres in time to showcase the two movies.
Cinemark Holdings Inc plans to open five theatres in Texas on 19 June to test new safety procedures. Cineworld Group Plc owner of Regal Cinemas in the United States, said it believes all of its theatres will reopen in July.
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