A “soft” state of emergency has been declared in Tokyo and three surrounding districts as authorities tackle rising Covid-19 cases.
The measures will mean a reduction in operating hours for cultural venues including cinemas, with a non-mandatory curfew of 8PM set to be introduced from January 8 for a one-month period. Restaurants and sports events are also being advised to reduce opening times but schools and shops will remain open.
The number of confirmed infections exceeded 2,400 in Tokyo today, January 7, following a surge in cases over the holidays. Nationwide, cases have exceeded a daily figure of 7,000 for the first time.
Japan’s cinema market was one of the few bright spots in a dismal 2020. Animated pic Demon Slayer The Movie: Mugen Train became the highest-grossing movie ever in the territory after just 73 days, taking north of $300M (read more here).
One of the major question marks remains, however, over the Olympics, which are due to be staged in Tokyo from late July, having been delayed from last summer. The country’s borders are currently closed to international travellers but various options are being discussed to hold the event, including athletes potentially receiving vaccines ahead of competing.
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