Filmed during the height of the pandemic, the documentary film Last Call: The Shutdown of NYC Bars, directed by Johnny Sweet explores the social and economic impact of COVID-19 on the NYC hospitality industry. The film will have its NYC Premiere on July 3rd at Queens World Film Festival, and will open in theaters on Friday July 16 at Laemmle Virtual Cinema.
On Sunday, March 15th, Mayor DeBlasio made the unprecedented announcement that in order to stem the spread of COVID-19, New York City and State bars and restaurants will have to shutdown. On March 17th, Mayor Cuomo expedited the shutdown and ordered all restaurants and bars to close at 8pm. The closures represent the largest disruption to the hospitality industry since September 11th and Hurricane Sandy.
Last Call: The Shutdown of NYC Bars explores the stories of local hospitality owners and workers (Diamond Dogs, Sparrow Tavern, The Bonnie in Astoria, Queens ) who were impacted by the Statewide Covid-19 shutdown of bars and restaurants
Their personal stories are interspersed with interviews from doctors, medical personal and mental health professionals and journalists as they chart the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and its local and global effect. The stories are informative, raw and very personal and explores how these individuals navigated the pandemic and subsequent shutdown. Their stories explore the physical and mental toll and ultimately their resilience and hope, as the hospitality looks toward life post pandemic.
Watch the trailer for Last Call: The Shutdown of NYC Bars.