AFI Gala Celebrating Julie Andrews Postponed Over Coronavirus Fears

The announcement came one day after organizers canceled SXSW, the massive film, music and tech festival that was scheduled to run March 13- 22 in Austin, Texas.

Concerns over the coronavirus outbreak continued to toil the entertainment industry Saturday, as the American Film Institute postponed its annual Life Achievement Award gala set to honor singer and actress Julie Andrews.

The gala was scheduled for April 25 at the Dolby Theatre, but will be rescheduled for an unspecified date early this summer.

"AFI's decision to postpone the event is simply in response to the rapidly evolving nature of current events and our promise to ensure the well- being of the artists and audience that gather each year to celebrate America's art form," AFI CEO and President Bob Gazzale said, according to Variety. "This move will allow our full attention to focus on the many gifts that Julie Andrews has given the world."

The announcement came one day after organizers canceled SXSW, the massive film, music and tech festival that was scheduled to run March 13- 22 in Austin, Texas.

Last week, the planned release of the new James Bond film was delayed by several months. "No Time To Die" -- actor Daniel Craig's final outing as
the famed fictional spy -- had been scheduled to open in April but will now be released in November.

"MGM, Universal and Bond producers, Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, announced today that after careful consideration and thorough evaluation of the global theatrical marketplace, the release of NO TIME TO DIE will be postponed until November 2020,'' producers tweeted.

CBS had earlier announced that production on the 33rd season of its award winning series `"The Amazing Race" was delayed, and a scheduled three- week shoot in Venice, Italy for Paramount's "Mission: Impossible 7" was postponed after the Italian government stopped all public gatherings.


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"Out of an abundance of caution for the safety and well-being of our cast and crew, and efforts of the local Venetian government to halt public gatherings in response to the threat of coronavirus, we are altering the production plan for our three-week shoot in Venice, the scheduled first leg of an extensive production for 'Mission: Impossible 7'," a Paramount spokesperson told the Hollywood Reporter. "During this hiatus, we want to be mindful of the concerns of the crew and are allowing them to return home until production starts. We will continue to monitor this situation, and work alongside health and government officials as it evolves."

Studios have also cancelled plans for the movie premieres in China for Disney's live action "Mulan" since theaters there have been closed since mid-January.

"The impact in 2020 from Covid-19 (coronavirus) on the motion picture business cannot be overstated,'' a financial expert told "The closure of cinemas in China alone is approaching a loss of $2 billion to the global box office.''

The Asia segments of most scheduled concert tours for performers such as BTS and Green Day have also been canceled or postponed.

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