Great Filmmakers Call on Congress to Help Save the Theater Industry

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A closed theater in New York

A closed theater in New York
Photo: Lindsey Nicholson / Educational Images / Universal Images Group via Getty Images

As reported by Deadline, a group of renowned filmmakers have partnered with the Directors Guild Of America, the National Association of Theater Owners, and the Motion Picture Association to sign a joint letter asking the US Congress to redirect the unused CARES bill money – the COVID relief fund transmitted in March that was originally designed to help small businesses cover costs during the major shutdown in early summer. Most of these benefits have since expired, and while the House and Senate argue over how (or if) to maintain them, these moviegoers have decided to step up and voice the importance of cinemas to the economy. and American culture.

Signatories (browsing the list in alphabetical order) include Wes Anderson, Judd Apatow, Noah Baumbach, Michael Bay, Barbara Broccoli, James Cameron, Sofia Coppola, Alfonso Cuarón, Lee Daniels, Clint Eastwood, Paul Feig, Greta Gerwig, Barry Jenkins, Patty Jenkins, Rian Johnson, Adam McKay, Christopher Nolan, Martin Scorsese, Zack Snyder, Denis Villeneuve, Taika Waititi, James Wan, Edgar Wright, Cathy Yan and David Yates (among others). The letter, addressed to Mitch McConnell, Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer and Kevin McCarthy, suggests that going to the movies is “at the heart of American life” and that films are “great unifiers where our country’s most talented storytellers are present their cinematographic achievements. Theaters themselves are also ‘economic strength multipliers’, provide 150,000 jobs in the industry, help retail environments near where cinemas are located (you have to buy the candy you sneak in somewhere. share, after all) and naturally have a major impact on the film industry itself.

The letter also goes on to say that 93% of theater companies suffered losses of more than 75% in the second quarter of 2020 (thus, during the pandemic), and if things do not improve, 69% of “small and average “sizable theater companies” will have to file for bankruptcy and 66 percent of theater jobs “will be lost.” In other words, Principeslowly burn at the box office probably won’t cut it for very long. You can read the full letter at Deadline.

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