As the pandemic careens through its eighth month in the U.S., the way it’s crept into every corner of our lives can be glimpsed just by looking at movie marquees. Films have turned back to the future, with flicks that ruled the summer decades ago topping the box office and drive-ins making a comeback, the Associated Press reported.
“Jaws,” “E.T.,” “Goonies” and “Ghostbusters” rank among the summer’s top draws for catalog films, according to several people who have seen box-office grosses, which the studios aren’t publicly reporting. The classics are reigning because, with most cineplexes now closed, all major new releases are postponed until at least Labor Day weekend. The new releases on offer are typically low-budget affairs, but they’re still hauling in cash to rival the classics.
Improvised drive-ins are popping up across the country. Walmart alone is transforming 160 of its Supercenter parking lots into venues for free movies.
The “it” brands of the moment are Clorox and Lysol, with their most recent quarterly sales up 22% and 50%, respectively. Lysol gained an edge when two of its products became the first approved by the Food and Drug Administration as proven to kill the coronavirus on surfaces, according to CNN. Clorox doesn’t expect to be able to fully stock grocery shelves with its disinfecting wipes until next year, CEO Benno Dorer told Reuters.
The pandemic’s losers include Champagne and Big Oil. Producers in France’s Champagne region say they’ve lost an estimated 1.7 billion euros ($2 billion) in sales this year—a hammering worse than the Great Depression, according to AP.
American oil giants Exxon and Chevron Corp. lost more than $9 billion in the second quarter as the pandemic slashed travel around the world.