The ongoing Covid-19 surge caused by the Omicron variant has Hollywood feeling deja vu, as several popular shows have either delayed returning from holiday breaks or have been forced to pause production as the set deals with positive tests.
TVLine reports, ABC has delayed the return of Grey’s Anatomy, Station 19, The Rookie and General Hospital. ABC Signature, the studio for the three series, has decided that “out of an abundance of caution” Grey’s and Station 19 will now resume production Jan. 12. No return date has been announced for The Rookie.
ABC has also pushed back production on its long-running daytime drama General Hospital for a week.
Over at CBS, Deadline is reporting TV’s most watched drama NCIS has paused production due to a positive test among the cast. The crossover with NCIS: Hawai’i, which is currently shooting, is still happening, per TVLine.
Sister show NCIS: LA, set to return later this month, will now resume production in February.
According to Deadline, NBC’s Chicago Fire has halted production after several cast and crew contracted Covid-19. The show is now contact tracing, and expects to restart next week, if everything can be done safely.
As of this writing, none of these delays are expected to impact broadcast schedules, so viewers shouldn’t have a break in episodes.
The announcements come on the heels of the Recording Academy postponing the Grammys and the Sundance Film Festival going virtual.
Late night host Seth Meyers was forced to cancel a week of his show after testing positive, while actress Lupita Nyong’o had to drop out of press events for her upcoming film The 355 after testing positive.
As the current surge continues, it’s clear that Hollywood will have some hard decisions to make in the coming weeks.
We’re keeping an eye on the status of the NAACP Image Awards, which are scheduled for Feb. 26, the SAG Awards on Feb. 27 and the Oscars on March 27. It will also be interesting to see if Warner Bros. decides to give The Batman an HBO Max run, as it’s set to hit theaters March 4.
Stay with The Root for updates on the ever changing production and release schedules.