Tribeca Film Festival Postponed Amid Coronavirus Fears

Roy Rochlin/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival
Robert De Niro (left) and Martin Scorsese at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival

The annual New York event had been set for the end of April.

The 2020 Tribeca Film Festival, set to run April 15-26 in New York, has been postponed due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus outbreak. A new date has not been announced.

"We founded the Tribeca Film Festival as a way to heal our community after the devastation of the 9/11 attacks in 2001. We were determined to overcome our fear and anxiety by joining together. It is in our DNA to march forward while caring about our community," festival co-founder and CEO of Tribeca Enterprises Jane Rosenthal said Thursday in a statement, adding that postponing this year's 19th edition of the New York event was a "difficult decision."

"We are committed to ensuring the health and safety of the public while also supporting our friends, filmmakers and storytellers who look to Tribeca as a platform to showcase their work to audiences," concluded Rosenthal. "We will be back to you shortly with our plans."

Further information about ticket refunds and future plans are available on Tribeca's website.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday that there were to be no gatherings of more than 500 people in New York City venues after 5 p.m. local time on Friday, with Broadway shows going dark from Thursday night through April 12. Schools, hospitals, mass transit and nursing homes are exempt from this rule.

Tribeca had previously announced its opening night premiere — the documentary Jimmy Carter Rock & Roll President — and feature and short-film slates. Highlights included the world premieres of the Sean Penn doc Citizen Penn, about the actor's relief work in Haiti, and the Drew Barrymore starrer The Stand-In, as well as a sneak peek at Paramount's The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run.

Other high-profile pics that were set to play the New York festival include HBO's Hugh Jackman starrer Bad Education, making its U.S. premiere; Judd Apatow's Pete Davidson starrer The King of Staten Island; Ron Howard's California wildfire doc Rebuilding Paradise; and Josephine Decker's Shirley Jackson film, Shirley, starring Elisabeth Moss as the "Lottery" author, each making their New York premieres.

It's unclear how the lineup will be affected by the delay as Shirley is currently set to hit theaters on April 24 and Bad Education is set to debut on HBO on April 25. The SpongeBob film is still set for a May 22 release.

The fest had also originally planned a 20th anniversary screening of American Psycho, tied to its April 14, 2000, release date.

Tribeca's delay comes as a number of events and large gatherings have been postponed or canceled due to concerns about the spread of the disease as officials seek to minimize big crowds. SXSW and the NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, among other events, have been canceled, while Coachella, Film at Lincoln Center's Chaplin Award Gala, the Montclair Film Festival, the New Directors/New Films festival and the start of the MLB season are among the events that have been postponed. Similarly, a number of TV shows have eliminated live in-studio audiences.

A number of films have also seen their release dates delayed by the pandemic, including A Quiet Place Part II, The Lovebirds, the 25th James Bond movie No Time to Die, the latest Fast & Furious installment F9 and the gerrymandering doc Slay the Dragon, which premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival.