Cannes: The Cannes Film Festival has been postponed to contain the spread of the coronavirus. The event, which was scheduled to begin May 12 and continue till May 23, will now be held either in June or July, the organisers said.
“Several options are considered in order to preserve its running, the main one being a simple postponement,” the organisers said in a statement.
“As soon as the development of the French and international health situation will allow us to assess the real possibility, we will make our decision known, in accordance with our ongoing consultation with the French Government and Cannes City Hall as well as with the festival’s board members, film industry professionals and all the partners of the event,” they added.
The festival is expected to attract about 40,000 attendees, including delegates to the film market that operates alongside the screening schedule.
Filmmaker-activist Spike Lee, who was selected as the first black president of the festival’s jury, welcomed the organisers’ decision.
“The stuff that we love has to take a back seat: movies, TV, sports, the NBA is a global sport, baseball. So many things have been postponed, and I agree with this move,” Lee was quoted as saying by the ‘Variety’ magazine.
“Let’s not forget this is the world’s biggest film festival, the world’s biggest stage for cinema and I’ll be the first black president of the jury. So it is better to have the event when there is no virus scare,” he added.
Speculations that the 73rd edition of the premiere movie gala would be cancelled or postponed were doing the rounds since March 8, when France brought in restrictions on mass gatherings, limiting them to 1,000 people, to prevent the spread of the COVID-19.
In another development regarding the entertainment industry the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) has called off its 47th annual Daytime Emmy Awards ceremony scheduled to happen in June in Los Angeles over COVID-19 concerns.
The decision comes days after the organisation decided to postpone both its annual Technology & Engineering Emmy Awards and its Sports Emmy Awards due to coronavirus outbreak.
“Given our concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic, we have decided that we will not be staging the 47th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards in Pasadena this coming June,” NATAS said in a statement.
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