Movie Theaters in Los Angeles Ordered Closed by Mayor in Response to Coronavirus

The order will be in effect until at least the end of the month

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Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced Sunday night he was ordering all movie theaters in Los Angeles to be closed in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

“I’m taking executive action to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in @LACity by closing bars, nightclubs, restaurants (except takeout/delivery), entertainment venues and gyms until March 31 unless extended. Grocery stores will remain open,” the mayor tweeted.

New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio made a similar order Sunday night as well, saying, “This is not a decision I make lightly. These places are part of the heart and soul of our city. They are part of what it means to be a New Yorker. But our city is facing an unprecedented threat, and we must respond with a wartime mentality. We will come through this, but until we do, we must make whatever sacrifices necessary to help our fellow New Yorkers.”

The new shutdown will likely worsen the overall box office picture for exhibitors, which suffered the worst weekend in ticket sales in more than two decades. Even the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks did not reduce audience turnout as badly.

Earlier in the day, California Gov. Gavin Newsom told reporters that there had been 335 confirmed cases in California, with six deaths. Beginning Monday, the Los Angeles Unified School District will be closed down for at least the next two weeks. Newsom also advised anyone over 65 or with pre-existing conditions to self-isolate.