Cairo: An annual Egyptian film festival has cancelled its opening ceremony due to bad weather and fears of the coronavirus, local media reported Sunday.
The Alexandria Film Festival, hosted in the Mediterranean city, said the opening gala, which was scheduled for Saturday evening, was cancelled due to erratic weather. Alexandria has been hit by heavy rains over the past two days, prompting local authorities to close the city’s school and university.
The organisers said the festival would only feature film showings and seminars starting from Sunday. The current 36th edition of the festival, running until November 12, is dedicated to veteran Egyptian actress Ezzat Al Alayli. He will be honoured as well as comedian Salah Abdullah, film director Inas Al Degheidi and film cameraman Mohsen Ahmed during the event.
Organisers have pledged strict compliance with precautions against COVID-19 and banning any indoor event.
The tightened measures come days after several Egyptian entertainers said they tested positive for the coronavirus after attending the Gouna Film Festival held late last month in the Red Sea resort of the same name.
Egypt, a country of over 100 million, so far has registered a total of 108,962 virus cases and 6,355 related fatalities.