French Theater Closure Likely Extended As Nationwide Curfew Tightened

By Dejan Vukosavljevic
(Credit: L’Opéra Nice Côte d’Azur / © Dominique Jaussein)

UPDATE: Spokesman of the French government Gabriel Attal confirmed that cinemas, theaters and opera houses would not reopen on Jan. 7 2021. “There were several meetings with the Culture Ministry in the past week and we found that it will not be possible because the virus is circulating still too much,” added Attal.

French government has announced that it has tightened the current curfew in 15 departments, where the regulation will begin at 6 p.m. instead of 8 p.m.

The curfew has been tightened in Hautes-Alpes, Alpes-Maritimes, Ardennes, Doubs, Jura, Marne, Haute-Marne, Meurthe-et-Moselle, Meuse, Haute-Saône, Vosges, Territoire de Belfort, Moselle, Nièvre, and Saône-et-Loire.

Spokesman of the Palais Matignon Gabriel Attal told TF1 television that the curfew could be extended to other departments if the situation deteriorated. Attal did not rule out another nationwide lockdown. President Emmanuel Macron, Prime Minister Jean Castex, and French top ministers will meet in the next few days to decide about the next steps in the battle against COVID-19.

The French government set a goal of new daily infections to drop below the crucial level of 5,000 new cases per day in order to reopen cultural venues. The country was set for reopening on Dec. 15, 2020, but had to extend the closure as the infection rate goal had not been met. The next possible reopening date is Jan. 7, 2021.

France logged 19,348 new cases of coronavirus infections over the past 24 hours on Jan. 1, 2021.