Italy closes down movie theatres as part of new restrictions to combat rising COVID-19 cases

Cinemas, live theatres, gaming halls, gyms in Italy will see closure, while bars and restaurants will have to suspend operations after 6 PM from 26 October. A night curfew has also been imposed.

FP Staff October 26, 2020 09:54:04 IST
Italy closes down movie theatres as part of new restrictions to combat rising COVID-19 cases

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announces new rules to contain the spread of COVID-19, on 25 October | Image from Twitter

Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, on Sunday, imposed at least a month of new restrictions across the country Sunday to fight rising coronavirus infections. These include shuttering of movie theatres

Worried about crippling Italy's stagnant economy, especially after 10 weeks of a severe lockdown earlier in the pandemic, Conte opted against another heavy nationwide lockdown. The new decree goes into effect Monday and lasts until 24 November.

Italy's exhibitors organisation ANEC protested the decision of closing cinemas, and in an open letter to the PM expressed their "disapproval" saying this decision will have a "devastating impact" on their businesses, reports Variety.

Besides cinemas, live theatres, gaming halls, gyms will see closure, while bars and restaurants will have to suspend operations after 6 PM. A night curfew has also been imposed. “Our aim is to protect health and the economy,” Conte said.

On 24 October, Italy surpassed a half million confirmed coronavirus cases since February, when it became the first country in Europe stricken by the pandemic. On Sunday, Italy registered 21,273 new confirmed cases and 128 deaths since the day before. Italy has reported a total of 37,338 virus deaths, Europe's second-highest pandemic death toll after Britain.

The country was among the first to bounce back from the devastation caused by the virus, even hosting a hybrid Venice Film Festival in September.

Theatres reopened in Italy on 15 June with social distancing rules in place. Variety notes that Italian cinemas have been struggling, partly because of a lack of big Hollywood films. Last weekend's top grossing Italian films were romantic drama Sul Più Bello, Gerard Butler's Greenland, and Pietro Castellitto's Venice prizewinner The Predators.

In their letter, ANEC said that if the imposition of closure is extended beyond 24 November, it will be "a death sentence for Italy’s entire exhibition sector." As the Christmas season approaches, the Italian industry was hoping to witness a revival in the business, which now may not happen due to the new restrictions.

(With inputs from The Associated Press)

 

 

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

NCB recovers cannabis from comedian Bharti Singh, husband Haarsh Limbachiyaa's Mumbai residence
India

NCB recovers cannabis from comedian Bharti Singh, husband Haarsh Limbachiyaa's Mumbai residence

Bharti Singh's name had cropped up during the interrogation of a drug peddler, after which her residence was searched, an NCB official said

Mismatched review: Netflix India show makes teenage adolescence look like a statement, not a stage of life
Entertainment

Mismatched review: Netflix India show makes teenage adolescence look like a statement, not a stage of life

Mismatched effectively commits the ultimate screenwriting sin: it tells an awful lot, but never really shows. Every moment and feeling is spoon-fed to the point of exhaustion.

Jingle Jangle, Forest Whitaker's film on Netflix, is a welcome reprieve from the solemnity of science and solitude
Entertainment

Jingle Jangle, Forest Whitaker's film on Netflix, is a welcome reprieve from the solemnity of science and solitude

Jingle Jangle is a palate cleanser from not only the year that 2020 has been, but also the saturation of white obsession with Christmas.