Vlog: Green light for China's silver screens

Andy Boreham
Cinemas across China reopened today after the film authority announced a green light for the silver screen last week, but it won't be much like the good ol' days, yet...
Andy Boreham
Shot by Andy Boreham and Ma Xuefeng. Edited by Andy Boreham. Subtitles by Hu Jun.

Cinemas across China reopened today after the film administration announced the green light last week.

At the same time, a set of stringent measures were put into place to ensure the safety of cinema-goers under the ongoing threat of novel coronavirus.

That means masks must be warn at all times, cinemas can only sell 30% of seats, and popcorn and other snacks and drinks will not be allowed. But that didn't put off locals who have waited nearly six months to head back to the cinema.

"Even though they're putting on older movies, it still felt like an exciting, new feeling," one movie enthusiast told me after coming out of her second session for the day. "My heart feels contented, I can finally see movies again!"

A young couple of lovebirds said they didn't mind sitting apart, as per the new rules: "Safety comes first." 

But the head manager of Shanghai Film Art Center, Gu Yan, said they may be able to make some concessions as Qixi, China's Valentine's Day, approaches. 

"Audiences must sit apart according to the rule," she told me. "But if they are lovers, couples, or anyone in a similar situation, I think we can make a more considerate arrangement."

The opening of cinemas in China has meant that the Shanghai International Film Festival, originally scheduled to begin a month ago, can go ahead. Tickets for the festival, which will hit the city's screens on July 25, went on sale today and sold out within two minutes.

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