The Cinema Exhibitors Association of Nigeria (CEAN) recently expressed concern over some films being released directly on streaming platforms rather than cinemas, where a wider audience could see them. Mr Patrick Lee, Chairman of CEAN, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that going to the movies is not the same as watching a movie on one’s phone or computer.
Lee stated that the organisation was already in discussions with the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) and Netflix, a movie streaming platform, to reach an agreement of some sort for such an investment.
“We are in discussions with the National Film and Video Censors Board (NFVCB) and Netflix to determine whether we can stream certain films at the cinema. Such investments are good since they would help the industry grow, he told NAN.
He also reassured moviegoers across the country that they would be safeguarded from COVID-19 in all cinemas. In light of the new variant of the pandemic, Lee added that cinemas across the federation were on high alert to ensure that visitors followed COVID-19 safety protocols to the letter.
“We are taking the new COVID-19 variant seriously; we are aware of the upsurge and are reminding our members regularly about the need of following the safety protocols. Handwashing, social distancing, hand sanitisation, temperature checks, and the agreed-upon hall capacity for each state are all in place. “We committed to a 50 per cent hall capacity for Lagos State, and we are sticking to it, Lee added.
“CEAN is also sending reminders to the country’s 54 cinemas, who are likewise sending them to their employees to ensure that the COVID-19 safety measures are followed. No case of the COVID-19 pandemic had been linked to any cinema yet, and the organisation hopes that will continue,” he said.