Dissatisfied with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo‘s decision to keep movie theaters in the state closed in light of the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, cinema owners are now pleading for Cuomo to allow reopenings in a fashion similar to that adopted by California and its Governor Gavin Newsom, claiming that failure to do so would mean “Many of these companies will not survive.”

In a letter addressed to Cuomo, the Global Cinema Federation — an international organization consisting of major theater owners — writes: “We recognize your commitment to ensuring that the citizens of New York remain safe and protected from COVID-19. With certain zip codes in New York seeing spikes of the virus, we are, of course, not suggesting that you open the entire state at once. We are, however, requesting that you adopt a plan similar to that in California, where Governor Newsom has allowed openings on a county-by-county basis according to virus data.”

“The state of New York is an important market for the exhibition industry, not only in the United States but also around the world,” the letter continued. “With New York’s theaters shuttered for nearly seven months and no indication of when they will be allowed to reopen, the studios that supply new movies have been reluctant to release their latest films to the point where almost no new major films will be released globally until 2021 and beyond. Without new movies to play in our cinemas, many members of the global exhibition community will be forced to close their doors again. Many of these companies will not survive.”

While Cuomo said earlier in August that cinemas would be included in the next round of businesses to reopen, the Governor’s senior advisor Richard Azzopardi also noted on October 5 that the state is battling a second wave of COVID-19 cases: “We’re moving heaven and Earth trying to stop a second wave and people need to acknowledge that we’re still in a pandemic and start to act like it,” he said. “We understand some people are unhappy, but you know what? Better unhappy than sick or worse.”

In other business-related news, share prices for Big Hit Entertainment more than doubled following its IPO before sharply plummeting by 63 percent.
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