What to expect when cinemas reopen

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 15) — As Metro Manila eases to Alert Level 3 from Oct. 16 to 31, more businesses, including cinemas, will be allowed to resume operations at 30% capacity for fully vaccinated individuals.

"When you enter the cinemas, again, in line with the 30% capacity, then you’ll be seated at least one seat apart," Cinema Exhibitors Association of the Philippines President Charmaine Bauzon told CNN Philippines on Thursday night.

Moviegoers should wear their face masks all the time, Bauzon said.

Eating inside cinemas will also be prohibited.

Trade Undersecretary Ireneo Vizmonte stressed owners must ensure proper ventilation in their movie houses before reopening.

"Alam naman po natin na ang mga sinehan ay mga saradong lugar," he said. "'Di pa po tayo pwedeng mag-enjoy ng inyong mga popcorn."

[Translation: We are well aware cinemas are enclosed places. You cannot enjoy your popcorn yet.]

Vizmonte also assured that cinemas currently operating as vaccination centers won't be affected.

But movie houses are not going to open just yet on Saturday, as operators need to "mobilize a lot of things." Bauzon said they are still finalizing the guidelines.

San Juan Mayor Francis Zamora said there will be High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters in his city's movie houses to ensure the safe reopening of cinemas amid the ongoing health crisis.

"All of these safety nets are in place," he told CNN Philippines' New Day.

READ: Cinema industry loses ₱21-B due to pandemic, says industry group