Disney, Warner Bros., Universal TV Put L.A.-Based Shows on Hiatus Amid COVID Crisis

Daniel Holloway
·2 min read

More than two dozen Southern California-based television series have been placed on extended hiatus amid calls for a pause in production activity as COVID infection rates rise in Los Angeles County.

Warner Bros. TV confirmed Thursday that series productions such as comedies “Mom,” “B Positive,” “Bob Hearts Abishola” for CBS, and dramas “Shameless” (Showtime) and “You” (Netflix) will not resume filming next week as scheduled. The studio aims to return the week of Jan. 11 but will evaluate as conditions evolve.

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Universal TV has similarly pressed pause on six comedies — NBC’s “Mr. Mayor,” “Kenan,” “Good Girls” and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”; HBO Max’s “Hacks”; and Netflix’s “Never Have I Ever.” UTV is also eyeing a Jan. 11 return date for most of its shows, although “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” is not expected to resume shooting before Jan. 18.

Walt Disney-owned 20th Television and ABC Signature together have extended production hiatuses on 16 shows: “911” (Fox); 911: Lone Star (Fox); American Crime Story: “Impeachment” (FX); “American Horror Story” (FX); “American Housewife” (ABC); “Big Shot” (Disney Plus); “Black-ish” (ABC); “Grey’s Anatomy” (ABC); “Last Man Standing” (Fox); “Love, Victor” (Hulu); “Mayans” (FX); “Mixed-ish” (ABC); “The Orville” (Fox); Rebel (ABC); “Station 19” (ABC); “This is Us” (NBC). None of the Disney shows are expected to return to production before Jan. 18.

Sony Pictures Television has extended the hiatus of ABC’s “The Goldbergs” and Netflix’s “Atypical,” both of which were slated to resume production next week, back a week. “Jeopardy!” and “Wheel of Fortune” are still expected to resume shooting the week of Jan. 11, as previously planned.

Spokespersons for Disney, Warner Bros., Sony, and Universal TV declined to comment.

The moves follow the decision Tuesday by CBS Television Studio to extend the holiday production hiatus after Los Angeles County suggested that shooting in the L.A. be suspended amid a surge in active coronavirus cases.

“Although music, TV and film productions are allowed to operate, we ask you to strongly consider pausing work for a few weeks during this catastrophic surge in COVID cases,” public health department representatives wrote in a Dec. 24 email, according to FilmLA. “Identify and delay higher risk activities, and focus on lower-risk work for now, if at all possible.”

According to the L.A. Times, Los Angeles County on Wednesday hit a single-day high with 262 coronavirus-related deaths, surpassing 10,000 such deaths since the onset of the pandemic.

(Pictured: CBS’ “Bob Hearts Abishola”)

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