The Trump administration has been eager to reopen the country and get the economy going once more as soon as possible, all while being careful not to make things even worse than they’ve been. On Thursday, they released a treatise entitled “Opening Up America Again,” in which they laid out proposals for what could start running once more. And, as per The Hollywood Reporter, on that list were movie theaters, which have now been closed for nearly a month.
The proposals don’t apply nationwide, and that each state must satisfy certain criteria before businesses deemed non-essential can fire things back up. Not everything would reopen at once; instead there would be phases. “Phase One” discourages gatherings of groups larger than 10, though that doesn’t necessarily discount large venues, such as theaters, long as they enforce strict social distancing. “Phase Two” finds more large venues able to loosen up restrictions, all while tending to “moderate social distancing.” Also grouped in “Phase Two” openings are schools and elective surgeries.
Though Trump himself asserted that his control was “total,” implying that he could force states to open at his will, he seemed to back down on that by week’s end, as the treatise acknowledges that it’s up to states to decide when they’re safe to open things up. THR claims Hollywood is “hopeful that many theaters will begin to turn on the lights by the end of June,” though the National Association of Theatre Owners has yet to comment on the administration’s plan.
So, when (or if) this actually happens, what will this look like? Will moviegoers have whole sections of a theater to themselves, yielding extra legroom? How many will feel safe enough to venture into a movie theater, all to watch Trolls World Tour? Meanwhile, Trump is hopeful some areas of the country will be out of danger as early May 1, although New York is sticking to at least May 15. Stay tuned.