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Malaysian Moviegoers May Get To Return To Cinemas Soon

Malaysian Moviegoers May Get To Return To Cinemas Soon

Akmal Hakim

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Malaysian moviegoers might soon be able to return to the cinemas as the government plans to unveil its Covid-19 guidelines for movie theaters next Monday.

According to the Communications and Multimedia Ministry, the National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS) had discussed with cinema operators and television stations to arrange for the reopening of Malaysia’s silver screens during the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO) period.

FINAS and all other relevant entertainment stakeholders have apparently been meeting to not only discuss ways to allow for the public to return to watching movies in theaters but also to figure out how to get movies and shows on-air in the first place.

Covid-19: Local cinema operators take extra cleaning measures ...
A theater being cleaned following the Covid-19 pandemic.
(Credit: mmCineplexes/The Star)

Now we don’t really have a clear picture of what the guidelines would be like, but local theater operators, TGV Cinemas, had previously mentioned that hygiene and social distancing measures like mandatory sanitization, temperature checks, and segregated seatings would be made into the “new normal” once it’s allowed to reopen. So we imagine this to be the benchmark for the government’s official set of rules.

The Covid-19 pandemic gave showbiz a run for its money as the industry was, more or less, forced to shut down with lockdowns and stay-at-home restrictions worldwide.

Besides shutting down cinemas and movie theaters across the globe, the coronavirus had also forced cancellation and delays of blockbuster movies that were supposed to premiere in 2020, leaving moviegoers with practically nothing new to watch.

As business dried up and movie halls remained empty, several cinemas in Malaysia also experienced some fungal problems too…

Here in Malaysia, the nation’s film industry has basically been on hiatus since the start of the nationwide Movement Control Order (MCO) back in March, with the government only recently allowing production companies to continue with filming activities in May.

And it looks like many Malaysians are eager to return to catch films on the big screen. According to a survey done by Cinema Online, more than 50% of people would return to cinemas once it’s reopened.

So far, only the state of Sabah has allowed movie cinemas to reopen to the public starting June 17 with adherence to standard operating procedures (SOPs).


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