Reprinted from Deadline Hollywood by David Robb on January 3, 2021.
On-set commercial production has been shuttered temporarily in Southern California because of surging coronavirus outbreaks in the region, effective immediately. The major studios and streamers, meanwhile, are already on production hiatus in Southern California until mid-January. The agreement to halt local commercial production was announced tonight by SAG-AFTRA, the Producer Guild of America, and the Joint Policy Committee of the Association of National Advertisers and the American Association of Advertising Agencies.
“Southern California hospitals are facing a crisis the likes of which we have never seen before,” said SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris. “Patients are dying in ambulances waiting for treatment because hospital emergency rooms are overwhelmed. This is not a safe environment for in-person production right now.”
David White, the union’s national executive director, said that “Even putting aside the risk of acquiring Covid on set – a risk that we have done a great deal to mitigate through our safety protocols – on-set production always poses some risk of injury, whether because of a stunt gone wrong, an equipment failure or a garden-variety fall. Right now, with few if any hospital beds available, it is hard to understand how a worker injured on set is supposed to seek treatment. I would like to thank the JPC and the PGA for their efforts to reinforce safety measures for all, and we acknowledge and appreciate the major studios and other producers who have proactively stepped up and postponed their production during this emergency.” …