Corona: episode IX–a new strand

A brief summary of how corona is affecting the Hollywood business

May+the+medical+masks%2C+Lysol+spray%2C+and+gloves+be+with+you.+

IMDb and Tiaran Vokes

May the medical masks, Lysol spray, and gloves be with you.

Tiaran Vokes, Staff Writer

The coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak is causing many disruptions in the entertainment business. From delaying movies’ releases to halting production on upcoming movies, Covid-19 has stopped the movie industry in its tracks.

 

What started as only a virus has now become a pandemic. The coronavirus is a respiratory disease that can spread from person to person. Symptoms include coughing, a fever, shortness of breath, headache, and unexplained loss of taste and smell. Although these symptoms don’t seem too bad, there have been 22,151 deaths in the United States as of April 13, 2020. The coronavirus was classified as a global pandemic last month by the World Health Organization. This means that there’s a new infectious disease spreading from country to country.  So, what does a virus have to do with the Hollywood industry? Well to start when there’s a global pandemic occurring multiple stores and businesses will have to close to help stop the spread of the infectious disease. And one of the businesses that decided to close its doors to help combat the disease was the entertainment industry. Movie theater chains like AMC and Regal Cinemas closed all of their theaters. With a decision like this these movie theater chains are losing a lot of money. If no one can go out to go see movies then there’s no money coming in. Just last month, the US box office recorded zero revenue for the first time in history after a total shutdown of movie theaters. With movie theaters closed, friends of mine are wallowing in pain, while others are fine with it. My dear friend Kinou Louis-Charles said she was “robbed of true joy,” while my other dear friend Aiyannah Pontikos said, “it’s very sad, but I can live with it.” Personally going to see a movie on the big screen is great entertainment and for some movies seeing it on the big screen is the only way to really connect with the film, so it’s sad to not be able to say “hey, let’s go see a movie.”

 

Coronavirus hasn’t only affected movie theaters and movies that were already out, it’s also affecting movies that were going to be released and movies that were in production. The Coronavirus has halted many production sites for movies like Fantastic Beasts 3 and The Little Mermaid. It has also delayed the release of multiple movies like Mulan, No Time to Die, and Black Widow. Instead of delaying the release of a movie, production companies decided to release the movie digitally. Universal decided to release Trolls: World Tour for rent on digital platforms like Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, and Google Play for $19.99.  Other noteworthy movies that went straight to digital release or were put on digital release early include Birds of Prey, Onward, Emma, and Bloodshot. Well, it might seem like a good idea to release movies digitally now, is it the best option? I asked some of my friends if they preferred companies to delay the movie’s release or to put it on streaming sites and the majority of them said it was best to delay the release because there’s a special feeling when you can see a movie on the big screen.

 

The coronavirus isn’t only affecting small businesses like local markets or boutiques, it’s also affecting big businesses like AMC Theaters and production companies like Universal Studios, Sony Pictures, and Walt Disney Pictures. The only thing people can do to help combat this virus is to self-quarantine and to practice social distancing. It’s also good to wash your hands properly and to cover your coughs and sneezes. There will be a day again when movie theater doors open again and there’s lines of people waiting to see a blockbuster but for now all we can do is entertain ourselves with movies that we have access to.