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At the Movies: COVID-19: The Sequel

It’s COVID-19: The Sequel.

With autumn, there’s been a rise in coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Pennsylvania and the United States.

There were 1,742 coronavirus cases Oct. 10 in Pennsylvania, third-highest one-day count since the mid-March pandemic start and highest one-day total since April 10. The Lehigh Valley saw a spike, with 123 new coronavirus cases, highest since May 2.

The coronavirus impact on movie distributors has been to further delay major releases until 2021.

And, a major movie theater chain has closed temporarily and other movie theaters have reduced days and hours of operation.

Studio officials are basing their decisions partly on the U.S. theatrical release box office figures of “Tenet” which has been good but not great.

Regal Cinema, the second-largest U.S. movie theater chain, is temporarily closing its 536 theaters, including Northampton Crossing, Easton, and Richland Crossing, Quakertown.

A Regal Cinema official cited the lack of new theatrical releases in the closings, which took place Oct. 9.

New Vision Theaters Tilghman Square 8 closed when its parent corporation filed for bankruptcy.

AMC Theaters, the nation’s largest chain, including AMC Allentown 16, Catasauqua Road, and AMC Promenade, is still open.

However, AMC has reduced hours and days of operation.

AMC Classic Allentown, 16, Catasauqua Road, is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday, as of the week of Oct. 4.

AMC Center Valley 16, Promenade Shops at Saucon Valley, is open Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The Movie Tavern Trexlertown is open Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Frank Banko Alehouse Cinemas, SteelStacks Bethlehem, is open with screenings of re-releases or classic movies. There are also outdoor screenings at SteelStacks.

Civic Theatre of Allentown has not resumed its art house cinema series, but continues to offer “Virtual Cinema” online.

Among second-run theaters in the area, the Roxy Theatre, Northampton, and the Emmaus Theatre, are still closed.

As of Oct. 8, Becky’s Drive-in, Northampton area; Shankweiler’s Drive-in, Orefield, and Mahoning Drive-In, Lehighton, are open weekends showing re-releases, classics and genre films.

Movies still set to open in theaters in 2020 include “Eternals, Nov. 5; ”Free Guy,” Dec. 11; “Death on the Nile,” Dec. 18; “Coming 2 America,” Dec. 18; “Wonder Woman 1984,” Dec. 25, and “News of the World,” Dec. 30.

Movies set to open theatrically in 2020 that have been further postponed, include:

“Escape Room 2,” set to open Aug. 14, is to open Jan. 1, 2021.

“Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway,” set to open Aug. 7, is to open Jan. 15, 2021.

“The King’s Man,” set to open Sept. 18, is to open Feb. 12, 2021.

“Antlers,” set to open April 17, is to open Feb. 19, 2021.

“Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” set to open July 10, is to open March 5, 2021.

“Tom & Jerry,” set to open Dec. 23, is to open March 5, 2021.

“The Many Saints of Newark,” set to open Sept. 25, is to open March 12, 2021.

“Raya and the Last Dragon,” set to open Nov. 25, is to open March 12, 2021.

“Ron’s Gone Wrong,” set to open Nov. 6, is to open April 23, 2021.

“Morbius,” set to open July 31, is to open March 19, 2021.

“F9,” as in “Fast and Furious 9,” set to open May 22, is to open April 2, 2021.

“Fatherhood,” set to open Oct. 23, is to open April 2, 2021.

“No Time To Die,” the James Bond movie starring Daniel Craig, set to open April 10, then Nov. 20, is to open April 2, 2021.

“Bob’s Burgers,” set to open July 17, is to open April 9, 2021.

“A Quiet Place Part II,” set to open March 8, then Sept. 6, is to open April 23, 2021.

“Last Night in Soho,” set to open Sept. 25, is to open April 23, 2021.

“Black Widow,” starring Scarlett Johansson in the title role, set to open May 10, then Nov. 6, is to open May 7, 2021.

“Spiral: From the Book of Saw,” set to open May 15, is to open May 20, 2021.

“Godzilla vs. Kong,” set to open Nov. 20, is to open May 21, 2021.

“Cruella,” set to open Dec. 23, is to open May 28, 2021.

“In the Heights,” based on the Lin-Manuel Miranda musical, set to open June 26, is to open June 18, 2021.

“Venom: Let There Be Carnage,” set to open Oct. 2, is to open June 25, 2021

“Minions: Rise of Gru,” set to open July 3, is to open July 2, 2021.

“Top Gun: Maverick,” starring Tom Cruise, set to open June 24, then Dec. 23, is to open July 2, 2021.

“The Forever Purge,” set to open July 10, is to open July 9, 2021.

“The Tomorrow War,” set to open Dec. 25, is to open July 23, 2021.

“Jungle Cruise,” based on the Disneyland amusement park ride and starring Dwayne Johnson, set to open July 24, is to open July 30, 2021.

“The Beatles: Get Back,” the documentary directed by Peter Jackson about the Beatles’ recording of the 1970 album, “Let It Be,” set to open Sept. 4, is to open Aug. 27, 2021.

“Dune,” set to open Dec. 18, is to open Oct. 1, 2021.

“Halloween Kills,” is delayed one year, until Oct. 15, 2021.

“King Richard,” set to open Nov. 21, is to open Nov. 25, 2021.

“West Side Story,” based on the Broadway play and directed by Steven Spielberg, set to open Dec. 18, is to open Dec. 10, 2021.

“Matrix 4,” starring Keanu Reeves, is to open Dec. 22, 2021, as are “Sing 2” and “The Nightengale.”

Meanwhile, Clint Eastwood, 90, will star in “Cry Macho,” which he will also direct and produce.

COVID-19 protocol will be in effect on the set for Eastwood’s film, as it is for “Red Notice,” starring Dwayne Johnson, which is in production.

“Dirty Harry” and The Rock ain’t gonna let COVID-19 stand in their way on their return to the movie theaters.

Will you?

Movie Box Office,

Oct. 9-11: “The War with Grandpa,” starring Robert De Niro and Allentown’s Oakes Fegley, opened at No. 1, with $3.6 million, 2,250 screens, ending the five week No. 1 run of “Tenet,” which dropped to No. 2 with $2.1 million, 2,215 screens, $48.3 million, six weeks. 3. “Hocus Pocus” dropped one place, $1.1 million, re-release, 2,113 screens, $3 million, two weeks. 4. “The New Mutants” dropped one place, $685,000, 1,663 screens, $21.9 million, seven weeks. 5. “Unhinged” dropped one place, $660,000 million, 1,608 screens, $19.3 million, nine weeks. 6. “Infidel” dropped one place, $205,000, 959 screens, $3.8 million, four weeks. 7. “Possessor Uncut,” $163,500, 303 screens, $529,855, two weeks. 8. “Yellow Rose,” $150,000, opening, 900 screens. 9. “Star Wars Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back” dropped three places, $145,000, re-release, 825 screens, $2.4 million, 14 weeks. 10. “The Broken Hearts Gallery” dropped three places, $90,000, 721 screens, $3.9 million, five weeks.


Oct. 16:

“S - - t house,”

R: Cooper Raiff directs Cooper Raiff, Dylan Gelula, Amy Landecker and Logan Miller in the Comedy Drama Romance. A college freshman parties with his resident advisor.

“2 Hearts,”

PG-13: Lance Hool directs Jacob Elordi, Radha Mitchell, Adan Canto and Kari Matchett in the Drama Romance. Two couples in two different decades and places interact.


R: Johnny Martin directs Donald Sutherland, Tyler Posey, Robert Ri’chard and John Pose in the Horror Thriller. A man barricades himself in an apartment when an outbreak of Screamers occurs.

“Don’t Look Back,”

No MPAA rating: Jeffrey Reddick directs Kourtney Bell, Will Stout, Skyler Hart and Jeremy Holm in the Horror Mystery Thriller. A young woman is among several witnesses of an assault.

“This Is Not a Movie,”

No MPAA rating: Yung Chang directs the documentary film about foreign correspondent and author Robert Fisk.

PRESS PHOTO BY PAUL WILLISTEIN AMC Center Valley 16, Promenade Shops at Saucon Valley, is open Tuesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.