The hopes of Hollywood were riding on the opening of “Tenet” on Wednesday as the Christopher Nolan spy thriller tests the appetite of movie fans to return to cinemas and rescue an industry hammered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The biggest release since schedules were torn up in March – and the only one of 2020’s potential summer blockbusters to make it to the screen in the holiday season.
“Tenet” launched in 70 countries on Wednesday ahead of the United States next week.
The movie has already won over some critics, but fans could be a harder sell given changes to the movie-going experience.
The actor Tom Cruise, whose “Top Gun: Maverick” was pulled from a release earlier this summer, donned a face mask to attend a preview showing of “Tenet” in London.
“Great to be back in a movie theatre everybody,” he said on Tuesday. “I loved it.”
Film critic Kaleem Aftab said “Tenet”, which cost AT&T’s Warner Bros more than $200 million to make according to reports, was exactly the kind of film the industry needed.
“Tenet is an intelligent blockbuster made with loads of money, with big explosions and big bangs, exactly what we’d expect from Christopher Nolan, who made films like ‘Interstellar’, ‘Inception’ and ‘Dunkirk’,” he said.
Movie theatres are where the money is made, he added.
“If ‘Tenet’ is a success we’re going to see a quick rush of releases, we’ll see Bond come out for sure in November.
“The worry is if ‘Tenet’ is a flop they’ll decide to wait until next summer,” said Aftab.
While cinemas have tentatively re-opened around the world, they have mainly relied on classics to test COVID-secure measures, along with a few new releases such as Russell Crowe’s thriller “Unhinged”.
Other films will go straight to streaming platforms, notably Disney’s “Mulan”.
Major UK cinema chain Cineworld, which owns Regal in the United States and Cinema City in Europe, said it was pleased by pre-release bookings for “Tenet”, which were tracking at a similar level to that of a blockbuster released pre-COVID.
“We hope that it helps to restore confidence in attending the cinema ahead of other high profile releases later this year, including the latest Bond, ‘Wonder Women 1984’, ‘Black Widow’ and ‘A Quiet Place II’,” a spokesman said.
Tessa Street, general manager of the Odeon Luxe in London’s Leicester Square, was confident the film starring John David Washington and Robert Pattinson would be a hit.
“It’s vitally important that ‘Tenet’ is successful and that we deliver a great experience for our guests so they want to come back,” she said.
Capacity at the cinema, which has hosted numerous premiers, has been reduced by 40 per cent, with adjacent seats automatically kept empty when film goers booked and masks required in the foyer, but not the auditorium.
Film goer William Taylor was excited to be back.
“Everyone is wearing masks, they are social distancing in the cinema and all the staff are wearing masks, so (I feel) pretty safe,” he told Reuters, heading to his seat.
Edited By: Emmanuel Okara (NAN)https://nnn.ng/hollywood-thriller-tenet-tests-fans-appetite-for-cinemas/
E! hosts skip Emmys red carpet after testing positive for COVID-19
The E! “Live From the Red Carpet” preshow for the Emmy Awards is missing a couple of key players this year.
During Sunday’s broadcast, Giuliana Rancic and Vivica A. Fox – who were expected to host a portion of E!’s 2020 red-carpet coverage – both announced that they tested positive for COVID-19 and therefore could not emcee the show as planned.
“As I go into my 20th year on the E! red carpet, I have to say I do not take missing an award show lightly.
“But unfortunately, this year is just so different. As part of E! and NBCUniversal’s very strict testing guidelines – especially before an event like this – I did find out that I tested positive for COVID-19.
“As much as I didn’t want to hear that, I’m very thankful I heard it before I traveled and possibly could have exposed other people. As far as my health, I’m doing well,” Rancic said via video chat.
Rancic added that her husband and son also tested positive for the respiratory illness and are “taking care of each other” in quarantine.
“I’m wishing you all the best,” she continued from home, adding: “Please protect yourselves and protect those around you. Take good care, and I’ll see you on the next red carpet.”
Later, E! hosts Brad Goreski and Nina Parker shared a statement from Fox explaining her own absence.
“I’m terribly sorry I cannot be with my E! family tonight,” the message read.
“Unfortunately I have tested positive for (COVID-19), so in an abundance of caution, I’ve isolated myself at home.
“During these unprecedented times, it’s more important than ever that we follow all safety and health rules and guidelines to protect ourselves and each other. … I look forward to seeing everyone again soon.”
Parker and Goreski – who were originally slated to host the E! “Countdown to the Red Carpet” from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Eastern before passing the baton to Rancic and Fox – simply extended their hosting duties to the “Live From the Red Carpet” telecast.
Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim
NCDC records 97 new COVID-19 infections, total cases now 57, 242
The NCDC disclosed this on its official twitter handle on Sunday .
It added that three persons died of COVID-19 complications while 138 patients, who recovered at various isolation centres across the country the same day, were discharged.
Based on the figures released, Lagos state recorded the highest number of infections with 46 new cases.
The data released also indicated that Kwara recorded 12 new infections, Rivers 11, and Adamawa 4.
Others were Niger – 4, Ogun – 4, Osun – 4, Ekiti – 3, Imo – 3, Kaduna – 3, Plateau – 2, and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) – 1.
“Till date, 57, 242 cases have been confirmed, 48, 569 cases have been discharged, and 1,098 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the FCT,” the centre said.
Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Emmanuel Yashim
Golf: DeChambeau muscles his way to United States Open victory
A bulked-up Bryson DeChambeau bashed his way to a six-shot United States Open victory on Sunday, silencing any lingering questions as to whether his brawny game could translate to the major stage.
World number nine DeChambeau, who began the day two shots back of United States Open debutant Matthew Wolff, clinched his first major title with a mix of jaw-dropping drives and clutch putts.
He shot a virtually flawless three-under-par 67 to reach six under for the tournament at Winged Foot.
“On nine is when I first thought, ‘OK, this could be reality’,” DeChambeau, speaking during the trophy presentation, said of his mindset after an eagle at the par-five ninth.
“I made that eagle, long eagle putt and I shocked myself by making it, too, and I thought to myself, ‘I could do it’. And then immediately after, I said, ‘nope, you’ve got to focus on each and every hole’.”
Wolff (75), appearing in only his second major, was one shot back of DeChambeau at the turn but fell apart over a back nine that included two bogeys and a double-bogey.
A fearless DeChambeau, whose final round included the eagle, two birdies and a bogey, attacked at every chance.
For his efforts was the only player to break par in the final round as he cruised to a maiden major at his 16th attempt.
He attacked Winged Foot all week like few other golfers can.
So confident in his approach, DeChambeau unleashed his driver on practically every par-four and par-five hole as he figured the birdie chances would outweigh the risk that Winged Foot’s nasty rough creates.
DeChambeau grabbed the solo lead after five holes, hit a perfectly-paced 40-foot eagle putt at the ninth to maintain a one-shot cushion.
It was a tournament that came down to a two-horse race between him and Wolff as they made the turn.
The 21-year-old Wolff was bidding to become the first player to win the United States Open on his tournament debut since Francis Ouimet in 1913.
But he bogeyed the 10th and 14th holes, before a double-bogey at 16.
“I battled hard. Things just didn’t go my way,” said Wolff. “But first United States Open, second-place is something to be proud of and hold your head up high for.”
Former British Open champion Louis Oosthuizen (73) birdied the last to finish alone in third-place, a distant eight shots back of DeChambeau.
He was one shot clear of Harris English (73), who made a double-bogey at the first where he lost his tee shot.
Xander Schauffele (74) looked ready to make a back-nine charge after making the turn fresh off back-to-back birdies.
But the world number seven made five consecutive bogeys from the 13th and finished in fifth-place.
Northern Irishman Rory McIlroy (75), who finished in a share of eighth-place, was almost left in a state of disbelief at DeChambeau’s win.
This was given his inaccuracy off the tee at a tournament renowned for its thick rough.
“I don’t really know what to say because that’s just the complete opposite of what you think a United States Open champion does,” said McIlroy.
“Look, he’s found a way to do it. Whether that’s good or bad for the game, I don’t know.
“But it’s just – it’s not the way I saw this golf course being played or this tournament being played. It’s kind of hard to really wrap my head around it.”
Edited By: Olawale Alabi)
Australian, British citizen killed in Solomon Islands bomb blast
An Australian man and his British colleague were killed on Sunday night in a bomb blast in the Solomon Islands, local police said.
“We are devastated by what has happened, and for the loss of two good colleagues,” NPA’s secretary general Henriette Killi Westhrin said in a statement.
The aid agency named the men as Trent Lee (Australian) and Stephen Atkinson (British citizen).
The Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) are investigating the incident and urged residents in West Honiara to stay away from the area.
“We call on members of the public in the Tasahe area of West Honiara to please stay well away from the area of the incident and allow RSIPF officers to do their work as we investigate this tragic incident,” police spokesperson Clifford Tunuki said.
The NPA said it had been working on a project with the government to locate unexploded bombs.
Its activities in Solomon Islands have temporarily been put on hold.
Tunuki confirmed no RSIPF officers were present at the time of the blast, “despite the fact that we work together on the Project.”
“On behalf of the RSIPF, I wish to convey my sincere condolences to families and relatives of those two foreign nationals, who died in this tragic incident,” he added.
Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim