The Irish government has set out the roadmap for lifting its lockdown, with cinemas allowed to resume operations from August 10.
The five-stage plan begins May 18 with the lightest lift in restrictions, allowing some shops to resume trading and restricted outdoor activity, before progressing to stage five in August which also allows cinemas, theaters and pubs to open and sporting events to resume, though numbers of those allowed to attend must conform to restrictions in place at the time.
Both theaters and cinemas will need to employ social distancing, meaning two meters between each customer.
The proposed date rules out any film releases that are currently holding to their summer dates, such as Warner Bros’ Christopher Nolan pic Tenet on July 17.
In an address, Irish premier Leo Varadkar said that the measures would progress through the outlined timeline only “if all things go to plan”.
“Unfortunately the risk of a second wave of the virus is ever present,” he added. “So we can only move from one phase to the next if the virus stays under control between each phase. There is a risk that we have to go back a phase if that happens [a second wave].”
Varadkar explained that under even the most positive scenarios there will still be a need for long-term physical distancing and increased hygiene.
Ireland has recorded 21,506 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 1,303 deaths at the time of writing.
This week and next are expected to see the first European cinemas re-open in Norway and the Czech Republic.
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