European Cinemas Boosted ‘Tenet,’ But Will a Second COVID Wave Close Them Again?

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Along with uneven domestic box office, Hollywood studios are keeping an eye on rising infection rates overseas

Brussels Airport And Metro Rocked By Explosions
BRUSSELS, BELGIUM – MARCH 22: The European Union flag flies at half mast outside EU Commission Headquarters following todays attack on March 22, 2016 in Brussels, Belgium. At least 30 people are thought to have been killed after Brussels airport and a Metro station were targeted by explosions. The attacks come just days after a key suspect in the Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, was captured in Brussels. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

Though the U.S. box office for Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” has caused alarm about the state of American theaters six months into the pandemic, the Warner Bros. film has earned solid numbers overseas thanks in part to European theaters. But with COVID-19 infection rates rising again throughout Europe (and many parts of the U.S.), there’s no guarantee that those countries will still be open for any big Hollywood films to be released this fall. In the U.K., daily new cases of the virus have risen from around 1,300 at the start of September to over 5,000 on Wednesday, edging closer to the peak of 6,000 daily new cases from back in early May.


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