France, one of the European countries hardest hit by Covid-19, will be on lockdown for at least two more weeks.
Prime Minister Edouard Philippe announced Friday that the country’s lockdown, first rolled out on March 17, will be extended until April 15.
Philippe said restrictions could be extended further, depending on the “sanitary situation.” France currently has 13,904 people suffering from coronavirus who are hospitalized, including 3,375 patients in critical condition, of which 1,300 are from the Ile-de-France region where Paris is located, according to Le Monde newspaper.
So far, 1,696 people have died from coronavirus in France. The government has expressed great concern over the fact that hospitals are saturated and intensive care beds are already running out, while the pandemic has not yet reached a peak.
Meanwhile, the French film industry has been struggling with the consequences of a widespread shutdown of theaters, as well as film and TV shoots.
The culture minister passed a decree last week to allow the National Film Board (CNC) to tweak the window release policy for movies that were in theaters as of March 14. These films will have the option of bypassing theaters and being released elsewhere, including streaming services.
The National Film Board has also set up some measures to help industry professionals by giving them access to loans and delaying deadlines on tax payments, on top of covering the bulk of staff’s partial unemployment indemnities. French producers have also been lobbying the government and the National Film Board to have insurance companies change their policies to provide coverage for coronavirus losses.