Forget Drive-Ins: Paris Hosts Floating Movie Theater With Socially Distant Boats On Seine River

Since the very beginning, this new decade has seen a major change in everything we previously considered normal. The “new normality” brought about new norms, new rules and guidelines, and apparently, new ideas and concepts.

While Americans are impressed by the opportunity to revive the pastime and go to drive-in movie theaters, Europeans have taken things to a new level!

An innovative floating movie theatre is held on the river Seine in Paris, France, and visitors can enjoy their time with their families from boats on a safe social- distance.

Nicknamed the “Cinéma sur l’Eau” (cinema on the water), the unique happening starts on July 18, to celebrate the beginning of Paris Plages.

This event is organized every year, and the city creates temporary beaches along the Seine and Bassin de Villette.

The free broadcast was scheduled to start at 7:30 pm, and people on “a fleet of 38 electric boats will be made available for the free screening of Gilles Lellouche’s film “Le Grand Bain”.”

These boats can hold two to six people each, and social distancing practices will be in places to ensure that those on board are family or friends.

Moreover, it was announced that 150 deckchairs would also be available on a first-come, first-served basis, and the film from the Quai de Seine was to be broadcast on a 16x9m screen.

Paris locals also got the chance to win seats on the boats on July 15 through an online lottery.

According to the plan, viewers would get the chance to watch ”Le Grand Bain” (Sink or Swim), a 2018 comedy about a group of men in a synchronized swimming team, and “ A corona story”, a short movie about the COVID-19 pandemic.

The latter won a contest launched by movie theater chain Mk2, which also organized this event in a collaboration with the ice cream company Häagen- Daz.

The official website announced the event as “an unusual cinema experience which marks the opening of the summer season.”

“Le Cinéma sur l’Eau” celebrates the late reopening of French movie theaters after an extended lockdown.

Last month, the theaters were allowed to reopen, but at 50 % capacity, after being closed for three months due to the corona pandemic.

Emmanuel Delesse, a director of the cinema chain UGC, then said:

“I only have one word – finally!”

Paris cinema 5 Caumartin opened with “Les Parfums” (The Perfumes), a French comedy telling a story about a prima donna perfume “nose” who invents several new fragrances.

The movie star Emmanuelle Devos says the cinema is very different from watching series on Netflix.

French film studios have postponed the release of some of their most prominent movies, while film productions have also faced difficulties in realizing new projects.

However, French film lovers are expected to flock in theaters to watch some of the French cinema classics.

FRANCE 24 culture editor Lisa Nesselson said:

“France is at a real advantage in the world for this reopening because, [of France’s] 6,000 screens, 40 percent of them are art houses, which means that French people are more than happy to pay for, quote unquote, old films.”