Movie theaters reopen nationwide with two new films 

September 2, 2020 - 18:28

TEHRAN – Movie theaters reopened nationwide Wednesday with the screening of two new films, “Local Anesthesia” and “Abadan 1160”, the secretary of the Screening Council of the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, Morteza Shayesteh, has said.

“Due to the people’s hesitation in going to the cinema during the pandemic, there needs to be a proper program for screening popular movies in order to bring the moviegoers back to the cinemas again,” Shayesteh said.

“There will be a meeting next week in the council to discuss ways to help foster cinema and study the available solutions,” he added.

He also said that there are plans to screen a few good and high-quality films to help keep cinema alive.
Starring Parsa Piruzfar, Soheil Mostajabian, Baran Kowsari, Hassan Majuni and Habib Rezai, “Local Anesthesia” has been written and directed by Hossein Mahkam.

In “Local Anesthesia”, Jalal learns that his sister who suffers from bipolar disorder has married. He leaves the house to visit Bahman, a friend of his who is an underground musician. On the way to Bahman’s house, he meets a taxi driver and the two of them spend the night out instead.       

“Abadan 1160” directed by Mehrdad Khoshbakht is about the people’s fight against Iraqi forces in the southwestern Iranian city of Abadan during the early months of the Iran-Iraq war.

Alireza Kamali, Hassan Majuni, Shabnam Gudarzi, Hamidreza Mohamamdi and Nader Soleimani are among the main casts of the film. 

Movie theaters, as well as theater and concert halls, resumed activities mid-June after a four-month-long closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but failed to attract audiences.

In a meeting held at the Coronavirus Combat and Prevention Headquarters in early June, President Hassan Rouhani had said that movie theaters and concert halls could resume activities with 50 percent of their capacity. 

The Cinema Organization of Iran had announced earlier that movie theaters in the so-called “white areas”-- regions with no coronavirus hospitalizations in the previous two weeks--were allowed to reopen.

The cinemagoers were told to observe social distancing, while the employees were asked to wear face masks and plastic gloves.

Fever tests before entering the cinemas, frequent sanitization of the halls and public restrooms, as well as the screening of a video on how to protect oneself from the coronavirus before the feature film are also among the regulations required by the headquarters.

Photo: “Abadan 1160” by director Mehrdad Khoshbakht. 


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