Venice Film Festival goes ahead despite coronavirus pandemic, with face masks and temperature checks

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Face masks, temperature checks and a distinct dearth of Hollywood stars will be the order of the day when Venice launches its film festival on Wednesday.

With strict anti-virus regulations in place, organisers say the world’s oldest film festival can act as a laboratory for similar big-ticket cultural events in the future.

The Venice Film Festival will be the first physical rather than online showcase of cinema since Covid-19 gripped the world, after Cannes was cancelled in May.

Face masks will be obligatory at screenings and other festival events, even outdoors, audiences will be socially distanced and there will be no fans lining the red carpet.

With travel to Italy from outside the EU subject to health checks and restrictions, Hollywood actors and directors will be notable for their absence.

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