Omicron hinders Hollywood’s return to business

Los Angeles — Tim Hillman was preparing to start working as a location manager for the Fox Network Show “9-1-1” in Los Angeles on Monday, but Omicron had other plans.

Disney’s procedures have postponed resumption to January 10 to avoid the risk of expensive shutdowns if crew members returning from vacation are tested positive in the middle of COVID-19, he said. Stated.

“This week we were supposed to get back to work on the show. We were on Christmas dormant and they extended it for a week,” Hillman said.

Shutting down the show once the shoot begins can be very costly for the producer.

“We watch at least $ 150,000 to $ 200,000 a day to shoot TV and movie companies on the street,” Hillman added. “If 30 or 40 crew members happen to test positive because you stood up and everyone was sick during the Christmas holidays, you suddenly run out of enough crew members … and you again. I have to shut it down. I just spent all that money on the startup. “

“9-1-1” is one of the increases in production that was either stopped by a coronavirus-positive case or decided to postpone returning to work after a traditional two-week vacation.

Disney has postponed all the work that was scheduled to return to filming this week until January 10, said those who weren’t allowed to comment publicly near the studio.

A person near the studio said the long-running CBS crime series NCIS, which resumed production this week, was suspended due to a positive COVID-19 test. CBS Studios has decided on a show-by-show basis whether to discontinue other productions, he said.

Despite the recovery of film and television production after the health crisis subsided, there was activity above pre-pandemic levels, but the recent emergence of highly contagious variants is now increasing production. I’m threatening. This is for studios and streaming companies fighting to deliver the hottest new shows and movies to retain viewers and subscribers in an increasingly competitive market supported by a surge in demand for streaming content. You will apply pressure.

“We don’t see the typical level of production rebound we see,” Film LA President Paul Audrey told the Times. “Usually when I look at the chart of the permit that comes back, I see a nearly vertical line, but not the same vertical line. It’s like a 45 degree line on the chart. Get a permit now. I’ve heard from people asking for cancellation or postponement. “

FilmLA, a non-profit organization that handles film permits in the region, estimates that about 12 projects that were planning to shoot on location have canceled or postponed the acquisition of film permits.

Prior to the expected return to work, the area was already showing signs of slowing down.

FilmLA recorded 95 shooting dates last week (December 27th to January 2nd). This decreased from 130 shooting dates in the same period of the previous year to 98 shooting dates in early 2020.

During this time last year, county health authorities and unions strongly encouraged postponement of January’s return to work until the end of the month to ease the burden on the health system. So far, there are no signs that such orders will be returned, Audrey said.

“they [county officials] For now, I’m pretty relieved in the movie industry. “

A question that Audrey and others have yet to answer is how long the delay may last.

The live show has recently been affected by stars such as Whoopi Goldberg, Jimmy Fallon and Seth Meyers who tested positive for COVID-19 during the holidays.

Some works, such as “The Bold and the Beautiful,” were not scheduled to return until January 11. Other works, such as Netflix’s “The Crown,” had to shut down their fifth season early last month due to COVID-19 positives. In British production.

Cases of California’s coronavirus reached record-breaking territory after vacation, and authorities warned that the next few weeks would be important in the fight against the highly infectious Omicron variant.

LA-based Donna Gross, a commercial location scout, has been asked to work and the project hasn’t been canceled yet, she said. Commercials tend to be more agile and shoot shorter periods with a smaller crew. However, Gross is already thinking about the possibility of forming a long line at the test center to work with a recently scouted set of T-Mobile ads.

“I was probably tested 100 times last year,” Gross said. “I noticed that the lab I usually go to in my neighborhood has a line around the block. If this doesn’t end by mid-January, do I have to stand in that line? ? One hour to work? “

This is less of an issue in the production of large films and televisions, which are usually tested in the field during filming. Some crew members need to be tested at least three times a week to meet industry safety protocols.

The alliance of union officials and film and television producers has not yet announced an extension or amendment to a long-standing employment contract that sets out wages and other conditions for crew members working during the pandemic. The agreement has not yet been announced, but it will expire on January 15th, so we are considering increasing the frequency of testing the set as part of the agreement.

Oliver Stark, left, “9-1-1” Peter Krause and Ryan Guzman. The show, aired on Fox, is one of many shows whose production has been affected by the proliferation of COVID-19 cases in California.

Omicron hinders Hollywood’s return to business

Source link Omicron hinders Hollywood’s return to business

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