Hollywood’s production schedule is largely back up and running after shutting down at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, raising questions about the standards and protocols in place across the industry.
The return to work is worrying to many in Hollywood, especially the workers returning to sets with protocols that are unclear or unenforced. Studios and guilds agreed on a set of standards about a week ago, but before then, COVID protocols varied widely among studios.
Some filmmakers have gone as far as to ask their fans not to see their movies in theaters. Jordan Peele reportedly played a prominent role in the decision to delay his film “Candyman,” which had been slated to debut in theaters on Oct. 23. Meanwhile, indie filmmakers Aaron Moorhead and Justin Benson have gone as far as to ask audiences not to see their film “Synchronic” indoors.
While smaller-budget films may run into difficulties, studios are footing the bill for regular coronavirus procedures for big-budget films like “Jurassic World: Dominion.” Universal Pictures has spent a reported $5 million on health and safety procedures for the film, including $3 million on coronavirus testing alone. The film had previously halted production due to a coronavirus outbreak in Malta, where filming began in July.