COVID-19 doesn’t seem to be letting up any time soon
because people won’t listen, and it appears that the virus has found its way to Will and Jada Pinkett Smith’s production company.
According to a statement from a Westbrook Productions spokesperson provided to Variety, 10 staffers on the set of an undisclosed Westbrook project tested positive for COVID-19, and were asymptomatic. This raises concerns on whether it’s too soon for production teams to get back to work, and Variety notes that “The outbreak is the first significant transmission reported at a production company.”
“Westbrook has given out relatively little information about the outbreak,” the site reads. “The company said that production had halted on one project that involved the infected workers.” Despite the outbreak, production continues for a number of various Westbrook projects, and the company has been “following federal, state and local guidelines for its productions” in order to resume work safely.
After testing the infected staffers again, their results came back negative. As a result, Variety reports that Westbrook has stopped using Rapid Reliable Testing, which helped to test the staffers both times. Anthony Capone, the president of Rapid Reliable Testing, said that after the virus passes through the body, it’s likely that those deemed positive will come back with a negative result. The company provides testing for 15 to 20 production studios in California.
“Especially if the people caught it at the same time, it’s possible they go through a similar infection period and incubation period,” Capone notes. He also said he has not received confirmation about Westbrook discontinuing their services with Rapid Reliable Testing.
The Smiths have been vocal about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and have dedicated programming to informing viewers about its seriousness. On a March episode of her show Red Table Talk, Jada Pinkett Smith had a discussion about the biology behind coronavirus, and on an episode of Will’s Snapchat series titled “Will From Home,” he chatted with Dr. Anthony Fauci about COVID-19 and racial disparities. Smith’s longtime musical partner DJ Jazzy Jeff was diagnosed with a serious case of COVID-19 earlier this year, which landed him in the hospital.
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