NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Movie theaters outside New York City in areas with low coronavirus infection rates will be allowed to reopen Oct. 23, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday.

There will be restrictions on audience size and other precautions in place, Cuomo said.

Movie theaters in New York City, Rockland County and Orange County are not included; counties must have a positivity rate below 2% on a 14-day rolling average and be without any “cluster zones.”

Audiences will be restricted to 25% of capacity with a maximum of 50 people per screen, Cuomo said at his briefing. Masks will be required and there will be assigned seating to ensure social distancing.

Watch Gov. Cuomo’s Full Briefing:

This week, the Global Cinema Federation sent an open letter to Cuomo urging him to let theaters reopen, saying Hollywood studios may continue delaying their remaining 2020 releases if theaters remain closed.

The group asked Cuomo to adopt a county-by-county plan for theater openings based on virus data, similar to what it said California Gov. Gavin Newsom has done.


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(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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