Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison ordered on Sunday evening local time that all cinemas, pubs, restaurants, casinos, places of worship and health clubs will shutter as of midday Monday.
Several cinemas around the world, throughout Europe and the Middle East, as well as India and the U.S./Canada have closed. Disney which has had the No. 1 movie in the world over the last two weeks, Pixar’s Onward, announced they wouldn’t be reporting global numbers for some time as the worldwide cinema infrastructure closed down. Other studios followed with plans of putting their current theatrical titles in the home as soon as possible.
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Australia has an estimated 1,314 confirmed cases of coronavirus, with close to half in New South Wales, the state that contains Sydney and the bulk of the country’s film industry. According to Variety, which had the news, Australia’s Palace cinema chain closed last week while other local circuits like Hoyts, Dendy and Event continued to have their doors open, but exercising auditorium cap levels. With the major studios cutting back on their releases over the next two months, Village Roadshow’s The Current War was the only notable title released in Australia over the weekend.
Yet, as the world shuts down their cinemas in the midst of the coronavirus, China, which is on the mend, could open their movie theaters back up as early as next weekend.
Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson are currently in Gold Coast, Australia recouping from COVID-19. Hanks was there as production was set to get underway for Warner Bros.’ Baz Luhrmann Elvis Presley movie, in which Hanks is set to play the legendary singer’s manager Colonel Tom Parker. Both Hanks and Wilson were recently released from the hospital and are in self quarantine at their home down under. Meanwhile, Warner’s Elvis Presley movie is on indefinite hiatus due to the coronavirus situation.
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