Norway has become the second European nation today to confirm its cinemas can re-open within the next two weeks.
Following news that the Czech Republic will allow venues to open on May 11, the Norwegian government has said that cinemas in the country can open their doors on May 7 after being shuttered for roughly two months.
Admissions will be limited to 50 per screen and people will be required to maintain one meter distance from each other, according to a rep of the Norwegian Film Institute.
Not all cinemas will automatically adhere to the new date, the rep noted, highlighting that it may not be economically viable to run a venue on limited sales when there are operating costs to be taken into account. There is also the shortage of content to be screened, and the first titles will be recent local films and also Sam Mendes’ hit war pic 1917, which is distributed by Nordisk Film in the territory; it was first released in January and grossed a strong $2.4M in Norway.
Norway put in place a nationwide lockdown in mid March, in contrast with the more light approach from neighbouring Sweden. Norway has recorded 7,759 confirmed cases and 210 deaths to date, though the infection rate slowed considerably last month and the government is lifting the lockdown, including sending some children back to school last week.