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How Theatres In Montreal Are Preparing For ‘Tenet’ Release

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The Coronavirus pandemic took an exceptional toll on Hollywood, especially because of the lockdown. Cinemas have been closed for months, which has delayed the release of several blockbusters. But, it looks like the city of Montreal in Quebec, Canada finally has found a solution to that problem. The city is ready for the release of Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet”. And it’s remarkable considering that Quebec has been the province hardest hit by COVID-19.

How COVID-19 affected cinemas in Montreal

Many cinema and multiplex owners across the city are awaiting big blockbuster releases like Tenet” and Mulan” However, due to COVID-19, there haven’t been many movies for them to screen. Despite the virus hitting the province hard, cinemas have been open since the 3rd of July. Vince Guzzo, President and CEO of Cinémas Guzzo, told Variety:

“All of a sudden, I’m losing more money than when I was shut.”

Before COVID-19, Guzzo says that they were open for seven days a week, with five daily shows. Those timings haven’t changed, but the shows definitely have. He has been playing French animated films, horror films like “The Parrish”, but no big releases like “Tenet” and “Mulan”. Films like these would bring in the big bucks for Guzzo, but that’s not the case this summer.

Moreover, Disney will now be releasing ‘Mulan’ on Disney+, which is another blow on Guzzo’s pocket. He said:

“The fact that the film moved, there’s a lot to say about what they [Disney] thinks of the movie.”

They’re ready for the release of “Tenet”

How Theatres In Montreal Are Preparing For Tenet Release
Warner Bros. ©

Despite the letdown by Disney, Guzzo and other multiplex owners are ready for the release of “Tenet”. The film will open on the 27th of August on 151 screens across the greater Montreal area. But, it’s not going to be an ordinary release. COVID-19 guidelines will be in place and cinemagoers will have to wear a mask in the mall. But, they can take the mask off once they’re in the auditorium. Guzzo said:

“They can have popcorn, soda and eat whatever they want. If they get up and go to the bathroom, they have to put a mask on.”

Moreover, safe seating and social distancing will also be enforced with rows being 48 inches apart. Other than that:

“People can sit in every row, but you’ve got to be two seats away from any family cluster that isn’t yours.”

Furthermore, seating is limited to 50 people per auditorium as Guzzo also said:

“That meant our smaller auditoriums were at 50% capacity and the larger ones were at 12%.”

Moreover, Guzzo is willing to go all out for “Tenet”, as he is willing to play it on as many screens as possible:

“In an 18-screen complex, I would typically have a film like that on two IMAX screens. Two French screens and two English screens — so six in total. For “Tenet,” I may go up to nine screens. Or 12.”

Movies other than “Tenet” set for release in Montreal

“Tenet” is not the only film that can pull crowds back into cinemas. Multiplex owners are also going to play “Spongebob Squarepants: Sponge on the Run” and “Unhinged” as well. Guzzo further said:

“It’s a great achievement that we’ve been able to have a conversation with Warner Bros. and Paramount and have them release those titles in Canada first. It means one doesn’t prevent the other from releasing pictures.”

It’s an advantage to Canada right now, over the United States of America! But, Guzzo says that advantage could be limited to big titles like “Tenet”. It won’t be the case for small releases, as he further said:

“But, only on the big titles. I don’t see that happening for so-so titles. If the film is going to be destroyed by critics, I think the studios will avoid giving the movie to people and countries ahead of time.”

Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” features Robert Pattinson, John David Washington, and Sir Kenneth Branagh. But, other than that not much is known of the plot of the film. Somehow, Nolan managed to keep the film in absolute secrecy. Therefore, we’ll have to wait for August the 27th to know how Nolan’s fourth-longest film will pan out.

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