Movie Theaters Reopen

Movie theaters across the United States are shut down as the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread across the country. Once we’re done battling this virus, some movie theaters may not be there to meet us on the other side. With an unclear window for when movie theaters will reopen, some of them simply can’t afford to be without a revenue stream for a few months. But the good news is, for those theaters who are able to survive, they’ll be met with open arms by moviegoers again.

A new poll conducted by analytics company EDO asked 6,800 participants whether or not they were likely to return to movie theaters whenever they’re back open for business. The good news is that 70% of those polled said they were likely to head back to movie theaters, and out of that group, 45% of them said they were “highly likely” to get back in front of the big screen. But for others, it won’t be such a quick turnaround. Read More »

Disney+ Launch in India

Disney+ has been in American homes since last fall, but the House of Mouse’s streaming service is only just now starting to expand to international territories.

It’s been one week since Disney+ arrived in Europe, turning The Mandalorian into quite the sensation among viewers in the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Spin, Switzerland, Austria and Ireland. Now even more international markets are getting a taste of the live-action Star Wars series, with Disney+ launch in India, which was previously delayed from debuting on March 29, starting today. Read More »

disney furlough

As the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic brings the entertainment industry to a complete standstill, the Walt Disney Company will begin furloughing employees “whose jobs aren’t necessary at this time” this month. The affected staffers will still receive “full health care benefits, plus the cost of employee and company premiums will be paid by Disney,” the company said.

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arthouse relief fund

The federal government’s recently-passed $2 trillion economic stimulus includes a $454 billion loan guarantee fund for businesses struggling from the economic blowback of the coronavirus, including movie theaters, which are facing a challenge like never before in the history of Hollywood. But it’s still unclear to me exactly what the timing will be on how the distribution of those funds will play out, and which theaters might be left standing when this pandemic eventually ends.

Today, the Criterion Collection and Janus Films have teamed up to start an arthouse relief fund for independent cinemas in the hopes that more than 150 theaters across the country will be able to pay their essential bills, including “payroll, insurance, rent, non deferrable loans, utilities, fundraising, and mortgages,” until we get through this period. Get the details below. Read More »

harry potter online

J.K. Rowling is bringing a little magic to our quarantines. The author of the Harry Potter series has launched an online hub for children, families and teachers who are stuck inside amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The hub, called Harry Potter at Home, comes soon after Rowling relaxed the copyright permission on the Harry Potter books so that teachers could read the beloved stories to their students over video.

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coronavirus updates

As the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic wears on, the economic effects of social distancing and industry-wide shutdowns of Hollywood productions across the world are being heavily felt. But everyone from companies, to celebrities, to top executives are pitching in to lessen the impact of the coronavirus crisis.

Former and current Disney CEOs Bob Iger and Bob Chapek helped set an example recently by foregoing all and part of their salaries, respectively, and top executives in other multimedia companies are following in their footsteps, with top Comcast, NBCUniversal, and Sky executives donating their salaries to help coronavirus relief efforts. Meanwhile, massive company that Disney is, the House of Mouse continues to stay in the headlines by donating masks and furloughing workers.

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Things are rather bleak for the movie theater industry right now, but here’s some good news for a change. A Texas theater has converted itself into a temporary drive-in – and the result has been a smashing success. An EVO Entertainment theater located in Schertz, TX (trivia: the hometown of /Film managing editor Jacob Hall) set up a drive-in option in its parking lot, and has been selling out every single show since opening last Friday.

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Alamo Drafthouse Virtural Cinema

Alamo Drafthouse recently announced a new Virtual Cinema initiative that will allow indie distributors like Kino Lorber, Film Movement, and Magnolia Pictures to let independently owned movie theaters screen films digitally to viewers. But now they’re also using the new Alamo-at-Home banner to keep some of their longest-running genre programming alive.

In conjunction with the American Genre Film Archive, the Alamo Drafthouse is bringing their signature Terror Tuesday and Weird Wednesday programming line-up to the Virtual Cinema space. Just like real Alamo Drafthouse screenings, the online screening experience will include pre-show content, introductions, and discussions conducted on Alamo Drafthouse’s website, BirthMoviesDeath. That sounds like a fun way to pass the time during this fresh new hell we’re living in. Read More »

fund for employees

Nearly two weeks ago, the National Association of Theatre Owners, which represents more than 33,000 movie theaters in the United States, announced that they were pledging $1 million to theater employees affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19). The organization promised that details about the fund would be released shortly, and now it seems they have a two-tiered plan to disburse it to those in need. Read More »

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michael bay sony deal

Michael Bay will continue to blow shit up for the foreseeable future thanks to a new multiyear first-look deal with Sony. The deal will allow Bay to produce both film and TV projects. That includes Black Five, an ensemble drama Bay will direct from a script by Ehren Kruger. Bay has a history with Sony, having made his feature directorial debut there with Bad Boys.

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