Director Christopher Nolan remains one of the most successful, and most talented, movie makers of the 21st century. Having transitioned from smaller movies such as Memento to mature blockbusters like Inception, Nolan has always made the kind of movies that audiences want to see on the big screen. Well, with Hollywood having shut down production amid the coronavirus, as well as cinemas shutting their doors all over the world in the name of public safety, Christopher Nolan has made a plea to Congress to step in and save movie theaters.

"As Congress considers applications for assistance from all sorts of affected businesses, I hope that people are seeing our exhibition community for what it really is: a vital part of social life. These are places of joyful mingling where workers serve up stories and treats to the crowds that come to enjoy an evening out with friends and family. As a filmmaker, my work can never be complete without those workers and the audiences they welcome."
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Nolan has penned a heartfelt essay for The Washington Post, titled "Movie theaters are a vital part of American social life. They will need our help", with the director reminding everyone of the importance of cinemas, and the crucial role they play in all of our lives. The director of The Dark Knight points out not only the positive role that movie theaters play in the lives of movie fans, but in the lives of all those who own, operate, and work at movie theaters around the country.

Nolan's words pay special attention to a Missouri-based family-owned chain, B&B Theaters, which has been in business since 1924. The company has never before had to lay off an employee, until this year. Now, after states all around the country called for the closure of non-essential businesses to help limit large gatherings, they've had to close over 400 theaters and lay off 2,000 employees.

Of course, this is just one example, but Nolan uses it as a focal point in order to highlight the disruption and unease that this pandemic is creating across the country, and the world, with many finding themselves in similar situations. He also uses it to make a wider point about the current state of precariousness for businesses everywhere, including airlines, auto factories, restaurants, as well as countless small businesses, which will no doubt all need help and require Congress to recognize this and act accordingly.

"When this crisis passes, the need for collective human engagement, the need to live and love and laugh and cry together, will be more powerful than ever. The combination of that pent-up demand and the promise of new movies could boost local economies and contribute billions to our national economy. We don't just owe it to the 150,000 workers of this great American industry to include them in those we help, we owe it to ourselves. We need what movies can offer us."

There is no word yet as to whether Nolan's plea will have any impact, but here's hoping it gets through. This comes to us from The Washington Post.

Jon Fuge at Movieweb
Jon Fuge