Having been closed for more than a year along with incurred losses of more than RM600 million, cinemas are now ready to reopen on the condition that only fully vaccinated movie goers are allowed into cinema halls.
Golden Screen Cinemas (GSC) Group Chief Executive Officer Koh Mei Lee stated that the individuals and cinema staff will have to follow the authorities’ standard operating procedures (SOPs) to avoid any upcoming cases.
“We are ready to resume operations. I believe the ideal time (to open) is as soon as possible. While cinemas usually have rigorous SOPs, we will only allow individuals who have received two doses of vaccination to enter for this reopening.”
This includes accessibility to fully vaccinated audiences (only 14 days after second dose) with proof of digital COVID-19 vaccination certificate, encouraging contactless purchases for movie tickets, food and beverage, manning of cinemas by fully vaccinated staff members, and enhanced PPE for staff, including double masking and face shields.
“A digital certificate from MySejahtera will be required upon entry,” Mei Lee told Astro Awani.
For Malaysians who have been under constant lockdowns for more than a year and whose mental health and emotional well-being are deteriorating, cinemas promise to provide a safe, therapeutic, and cheap respite for vaccinated audiences.
Despite having several SOPs, such as social-distanced seating in halls and masking when not eating or drinking, cinemas were among the first to close its doors at the beginning of the pandemic and the last to reopen, it has come to our surprise till date that there have been no reports of COVID-19 infections and clusters recorded in cinemas.
Malaysian film distributors and theatre owners have previously urged that the government consider reopening movie theatres across the country for those who have completed the COVID-19 vaccination.
— GSC | #HelloWeCan (@GSCinemas) September 2, 2021
Positively, the Communications and Multimedia Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa reportedly said that the government will make an announcement on the reopening of cinemas in the near future.