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Walt Disney To Close North American Theme Parks, Halts Production On Most Live Action Films

Bob Chapek
Disney's new CEO Bob Chapek
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(CelebrityAccess) — The Walt Disney Company on Thursday announced it will shutter its theme parks worldwide in response to the global COVID-19 outbreak.

Affected properties include the company’s flagship Walt Disney World resort in Florida, as well as Disneylands in Paris, and Los Angeles.

The parks will begin closing this weekend and remain closed at least through the end of the month.

“In an abundance of caution and in the best interest of our guests and employees, we are proceeding with the closure of our theme parks at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Paris Resort, beginning at the close of business on Sunday, March 15, through the end of the month,” the Walt Disney Company said in a release.

The hotels at Walt Disney World, along with dining and retail facilities will remain open for the time being.

Disney’s parks in China and Japan have already been closed for several weeks.

Disney Studios also announced it has shut down production on many of its upcoming live-action movies and television projects.

“While there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 on our productions, after considering the current environment and the best interests of our cast and crew, we have made the decision to pause production on some of our live-action films for a short time. We will continue to assess the situation and restart as soon as feasible,” the company said in a statement.

Affected films include “The Little Mermaid,” “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” “Home Alone,” “The Last Duel,” “Nightmare Alley,” “Peter Pan & Wendy” and “Shrunk.”

It is unclear if Disney’s animation studios will be affected by the outage.

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