Movies & Cinema during the Pandemic? Catch-all Discussion

Colin Jacobson

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You're right. They don't. But the health hazards have to be part of the discussion because we aren't in normal times. Movie theaters are hurting, but the Broadway industry is facing the same challenge right now, and they are admitting that 2020 is over.

It completely sucks and I wish we weren't in this situation. But the sooner the studios and movie theaters admit that 2020 is over in relation to new releases, the sooner they can start to rebuild the 2021 and 2022 schedules in order to accommodate the inclusion of all of these delayed films.
I still don't see why they should bail on 2020 when they may be able to make it work without packed houses.

Maybe the rest of 2020 will come and go without new releases, but I still find Broadway to be a largely irrelevant connection for the reasons discussed.

And FWIW, concert venues haven't thrown in the towel either, so there's no uniform "give up on 2020" approach in all other entertainment avenues and movies are the sole holdout...
 

Jake Lipson

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I still don't see why they should bail on 2020 when they may be able to make it work without packed houses.
Take your pick:

Because studios, theaters and filmmakers shouldn't ask movie fans to choose between seeing the latest new releases on the big screen and risking their health, or the health of those around them.

Because the big films will make more money next year after a vaccine is found than they will this year.

Because more screens would be required for less movies to compensate for the reduced capacity limits, therefore preventing all films that are currently scheduled for release from coexisting on the limited number of screens available.

Because we just don't know what's going to happen with the virus.

Because it's unrealistic for the studios to spend money marketing a film If they're not sure they can actually keep any particular release date.

Because if theaters opened again and an outbreak of the virus was traced back to them, it would be game over.

Because even if theaters do open up again and they were safe, we could then get to a point where they have to shut down again two weeks later due to an outbreak of the virus in another sector. Then you'd have another round of films like Onward and other stuff that came out in March that got their theatrical runs cut drastically short through no fault of their own and are basically a wash for the studios that made them.

Because being part of an audience in a crowded room sharing a communal experience together is a big part of the appeal of going to the movies, and that's what we can't have right now.

Big properties like Tenet could be moved into the 2021 calendar. Smaller projects could continue to be moved to streaming to provide a cash infusion to the studios in the meantime.

I know it sucks. Anyone who has been reading my posts for any significant length of time knows how much I love the going to the movie theater and how much I miss it. But it would suck even more if theaters opened and caused a public health problem, so I think the theaters and the studios need to take the long-term view here. As Josh suggested, there should be some sort of rent freeze put in place for businesses that cannot open so that they are able to come back when it's safe, without having to risk opening too early. Then it will be much easier for everyone to ride this out, which will ultimately get us back to normal sooner.
 
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Colin Jacobson

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Take your pick:

Because studios, theaters and filmmakers shouldn't ask movie fans to choose between seeing the latest new releases on the big screen and risking their health, or the health of those around them.

Because the big films will make more money next year after a vaccine is found than they will this year.

Because more screens would be required for less movies to compensate for the reduced capacity limits, therefore preventing all films that are currently scheduled for release from coexisting on the limited number of screens available.

Because we just don't know what's going to happen with the virus.

Because it's unrealistic for the studios to spend money marketing a film If they're not sure they can actually keep any particular release date.

Because if theaters opened again and an outbreak of the virus was traced back to them, it would be game over.

Because even if theaters do open up again and they were safe, we could then get to a point where they have to shut down again two weeks later due to an outbreak of the virus in another sector. Then you'd have another round of films like Onward and other stuff that came out in March that got their theatrical runs cut drastically short through no fault of their own and are basically a wash for the studios that made them.

Because being part of an audience in a crowded room sharing a communal experience together is a big part of the appeal of going to the movies, and that's what we can't have right now.

Big properties like Tenet could be moved into the 2021 calendar. Smaller projects could continue to be moved to streaming to provide a cash infusion to the studios in the meantime.

I know it sucks. Anyone who has been reading my posts for any significant length of time knows how much I love the going to the movie theater and how much I miss it. But it would suck even more if theaters opened and caused a public health problem, so I think the theaters and the studios need to take the long-term view here. As Josh suggested, there should be some sort of rent freeze put in place for businesses that cannot open so that they are able to come back when it's safe, without having to risk opening too early. Then it will be much easier for everyone to ride this out, which will ultimately get us back to normal sooner.
You'll note the "may be able to make it work" part of my post.

Broadway has decided they can't make it work in 2020. Movies don't agree, and while I get your concerns, none of them mean movies can't work prior to 2021.

I see no reason why Hollywood should give up with half a year left. I see no harm in the wait and see approach and don't understand why you seem to feel Hollywood should officially bail now...
 

TonyD

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I see no reason why Hollywood should give up with half a year left. I see no harm in the waitand see approach and don't understand why you seem to feel Hollywood should officially bail now...
Because of all the reasons already mentioned.
Also humans are selfish, irresponsible children and cannot, pardon the expression, police themselves.

Also I see all of the harm in opening theaters.
 

Jake Lipson

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don't understand why you seem to feel Hollywood should officially bail now...
My previous post made my reasons very clear. I have nothing further to add without going around in circles. So if you don't get it, then we'll just have to agree to disagree on this point, which is fine.
 
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Jake Lipson

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In other news, Cinemark will now require face masks when they start their phased reopening on July 24, except for when you are eating or drinking in the auditorium. They previously weren't going to require them at all except in states where it is required by law. But if you can take it off to eat and drink, then that's essentially the same as not having the requirement, which is also true of the other chains that have instituted similar policies. They can't make it viable to open without selling food, and they can't sell food without people taking off their masks to eat it, so the whole thing is not safe.

Meanwhile, Dr. Fauci is saying that he would not be surprised if we get up to 100,000 new cases daily. I don't want to turn this into a political conversation, but I just don't see how headlines like that and headlines about movie theaters reopening can coexist.

Oh, and here's one more good reason I just thought of for calling 2020 done in terms of new releases, in addition to the bunch I rattled off in the previous post that Colin quoted. The studios currently have films on the 2021 schedule which may not be able to make their release dates due to having their production interrupted by the virus. If the remaining 2020 tentpoles are delayed into the new year, that eases the stress on those productions to go back as soon as possible. The delayed 2020 films, which are done or close to done, will be able to substitute in for the 2021 films that haven't finished on time, therefore preventing a lull in new product after the virus is over while still letting the films currently scheduled for 2021 take their time getting going again until it is safe. If the remaining 2020 films all actually stay on this year, not only would they have drastically depressed grosses, but also there would be a distinct lack of new product for next year because of the current production delays. If there's got to be a gap in the release schedule somewhere, it might as well be this year when it is literally unsafe for people to go out. That way, we can still have a steady stream of new films coming out next year (hopefully) post-vaccine, and paused productions can wait until It is truly safe to go back and finish their work the way they intended.
 
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Jake Lipson

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In the spirit of returning this thread to its main subject, which is supposed to be about how we are consuming movies during this time...

What have you all been watching at home recently during the pandemic?

I'm waiting for Hamilton to drop on Disney+ at midnight.
 
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DaveF

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Josh Steinberg

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I was clear earlier in the thread: this is for movies. You want to talk COVID-19 per se, take it to the appropriate thread. Posts are deleted accordingly.
Apologies Dave, I got mixed up in which thread I was in. I will edit accordingly.
 

DaveF

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The beloved and amazing Alamo Drafthouse is now severely suffering.

They are trying to find a way to show movies to patrons

They have an awesome retro movie about what they plan
 

Jake Lipson

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One of my local Cinemark theaters, which was already selling tickets for a reopening tomorrow, is now not doing that because the local government has determined that theaters must stay closed in response to COVID spikes. Certainly what is happening to Alamo is not unique, although it is very disheartening nonetheless.
 
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Malcolm R

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I re-watched all the 1989-1997 Batman films over the past 10 days or so. Haven't watched them for quite a long time. The first two were still great fun. The last two were worse than I remembered.
 
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Wayne_j

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My local drive-in was originally playing The Force Awakens and Deadpool this weekend, now they are showing The Jungle Book and The Force Awakens instead.
 

Colin Jacobson

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My local drive-in was originally playing The Force Awakens and Deadpool this weekend, now they are showing The Jungle Book and The Force Awakens instead.
Makes more sense. Not sure why they thought it was a good idea to pair "Force" with the hard-"R" "Deadpool"!
 

Jake Lipson

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Variety has an interesting article about the costs to studios that are associated with delaying movies like Tenet and Mulan.


I think this is another good reason that they should just push them to "TBD" status for now, rather than incrementally pushing them back every couple of weeks.
 

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