Coronavirus Crisis Closes the Ghibli Museum Until March 17

Bushiroad president Takaaki Kidani discusses future events

As the Tokyo Metropolitan Government enacts new measures to reduce the spread of the coronavirus in the world’s biggest city, the number of anime-related sightseeing locations closing increases, with the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, in outer Tokyo, closing its doors for three weeks from February 25.

 

Ghibli Museum

 

The Ghibli Museum announced on its website on February 22 that it’ll be closing its doors from February 25 to March 17 to “prevent the spread of the new coronavirus infectious disease.” The museum, which showcases the beauty of Studio Ghibli's films, discussed with Mitaka City the new measures brought in by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and how it affects the popular attraction. Together, the museum and Mitaka decided that closing the museum for three weeks would help limit the spread of the coronavirus.

 

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government announced the “Tokyo Metropolitan Government Event Handling” measure to cancel or postpone all Tokyo Government-sponsored large-scale indoor events until the middle of March. For smaller events, the city is looking at how to best handle them in the ongoing crisis. The Ghibli Museum will be offering refunds to those who already have tickets as part of an already on-going refund policy surrounding people affected by the coronavirus.

 

Bushiroad

 

Takaaki Kidani, the president of Bushiroad, posted on this Twitter account about the state of upcoming events for the company after they announced that all events up until March 18 were canceled or postponed and that the company is pulling out of AnimeJapan 2020. Kidani said that the status of all events will be announced 35 days out, and even if the events are either canceled or postponed, refunds will be granted.

 

 

As of writing, Japan has 146 cases of coronavirus in the country, outside of the Diamond Princess cruise ship, with increases of double-digit cases per day. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced on February 23 a task force to combat “a potential surge in the number of people infected,” said NHK World.

 

Sources: Ghibli Museum website (1, 2), NHK, Takaaki Kidani on Twitter, NHK World

 

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Daryl Harding is a Japan Correspondent for Crunchyroll News. He also runs the YouTube channel about Japan stuff called TheDoctorDazza, tweets at @DoctorDazza and posts photos of his travels on Instagram.

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