As the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic wears on, Hollywood and other industries are finding ways to cope with the rippling effects of shutdowns and quarantine. Some industries are seeing a surprising boom, like drive-in theaters or sellers of Bane masks from The Dark Knight Rises. Meanwhile, movie theaters in Japan are slowly re-opening by showing Hollywood classics like Ben-Hur, The Wizard of Oz, and Blade Runner.
Coronavirus Entertainment Updates
As state and local governments put in place requirements for residents to wear masks while going to public places, masks have been on the rise. But because everyone thought of the same thing, Bane masks in particular have been seeing a boom.
Plastic adult masks that recreate the one worn by Tom Hardy’s Bane in The Dark Knight Rises have been sold out at several costume sites since early this month, including at Costume.com, BuyCostumes.com and HalloweenCostumes.com, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Amazon is still selling Bane masks, and a few children’s masks are still in stock, but it should be noted that U.S. military clarifies that Bane masks are not an acceptable face covering during the pandemic.
Drive-in theaters have seen an unexpected surge in popularity since the pandemic began, with social distancing protocols making the novelty moviegoing experience the perfect outdoor experience. And with summer on its way, people are more eager to get outside than ever. So New York City is bringing the Uptown Drive-In festival-like event to Yankee Stadium this summer season. Every weekend starting in July, the Uptown Drive-In event will feature a drive-in movie, a live-music concert featuring local NYC artists, and a carside dinner service from popular street vendors.
There will also be on-site live interactive games, raffles, and giveaways. The Uptown Drive-In also aims to have date-night experiences on weekends, and family-friendly brunches on Saturday and Sundays. The prices for tickets, which will be sold online, are still being determined.
The event will be held as safely as possible, with the stage set to be lifted, and the MC, performers and hosts streaming form a PA system to attendees’ car radios, MASC Hospitality Group’s Marco Shalma confirms to Time Out New York.
Japan is slowly opening its cinemas and bringing audiences back with a repertory screenings of Hollywood classics. Toho Cinemas, the country’s largest multiplex chain, opened 10 locations last weekend with screenings of William Wyler’s Ben-Hur (1959), The Wizard of Oz (1939), James Dean’s East of Eden (1955), Bonnie and Clyde (1969) and Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner (1982). Westside Story (1961) and John Wayne’s Rio Bravo (1959) also were playing at several locations, along with other favorites of the 1980s and 90s, like E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982) and The Shawshank Redemption (1994).
The films are classics that many American moviegoers haven’t even seen, which speaks to the Japanese public’s great tastes — a Toho executive told Reuters (via THR), “We’re playing films that are popular.”
A few domestic and regional Asian favorites are playing as well, including Makoto Shinkai’s recent anime hits Your Name (2016) and Weathering With You (2019) as well as Hideaki Anno’s smart monster movie Shin Godzilla (2016). Bong Joon Ho’s Oscar best picture winner Parasite has also been brought back to Japan’s theaters after making good money before cinemas shut down in March.
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