htxt.africast – COVID-19, banks and the future of cinema

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As the year continues to whittle away, the africast still arrives weekly to bring you the latest topics to discuss.

First up this week is COVID-19 in South Africa as the country’s growing numbers of infections and deaths have finally moved the government to make some changes. On the grand scope of things, the changes are very minute with additional restrictions in some hotspots, but at least they’re doing something. With the holiday season upon us and many people planning to travel and meet in large numbers to celebrate, things will probably only get worse.

Next up is FNB, which recently caused their customers a great deal of unnecessary stress by moving around debit order dates in December on the shaky assumption that many people are paid early in the last month of the year. We’ve spoken to higher ups at the financial institution, as well as the customer care line, and the whole situation stinks of “doing nothing would have been preferable”.

Finally it’s time for the movies, and Warner Bros. may have changed the future of cinema by announcing that, in 2021, its entire slate of 17 high-budget movies will release on streaming service HBO Max on the same day as theatres. While there are restrictions, such as 31-day limit and availability only in the US, it may signify a big move in the industry to legitimise streaming for tentpole movies.

The header image above is from an infamous rant from director David Lynch in which he insists that movies cannot be experienced on phones. Similar rhetoric from fellow directors and Hollywood elite is exactly why streaming has had such a difficult time and consumers have been left out in the cold this year.

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