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Paris Beaches Open with Floating Cinema on the Seine

People attend the screening of the French movie 'Le grand bain' in the Bassin de la Villette on the first day of the 19th edition of the 'Paris Plages' (Paris Beaches) summer event on July 18, 2020, in Paris.

Paris Plages (Paris Beaches) opened this year with an outdoor movie showing on the banks of the River Seine, as the city is coping with the COVID-19 pandemic.

MK2 Cinemas partnered with the city of Paris to organize this year’s event.

"It's been years, we're creating operations to take the cinema out of the cinema rooms as a promotion tool, and after the few months of confinement, we thought we needed a way to tell to the people and to tell to the world that cinemas are open in Paris, that Paris is one of the worldwide capital of cinema, and also to create a way for them to enjoy with their families a magnificent night, said Elisha Karmitz, CEO of MK2 Cinemas.

On Saturday people watched the 2018 French comedy "Le grand bain" from boats or on deck chairs on the Seine’s banks. Some said they felt safer at an open-air screening.

"I already went back to the cinema once, wearing a mask, but I have to admit there is still some apprehension to go back to cinema,” said Luc Bouvier, an attendee. “But here, since it is an open-air screening, there are less doubts, we feel safer."

Paris Plages is an annual event held in July and August during which roads along the River Seine are closed to turn the waterfront into beach front.

The event was initiated in 2002 by the newly elected Socialist Mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoë, to help people cope with the hot summer in the city.