How COVID-19 Has Altered Video Production

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, many changes have taken place. And the film industry was not immune to these changes.

While filming on set is gradually getting up and running again, things are still not back to normal for film production.

Safety is paramount and that’s why at 2Bridges, I completed the COVID Compliance Officer training so I can manage and run a safe film set. We always put safety first and foremost, when providing videography services to our clients.

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For months, filming on set was brought to a complete halt due to quarantine.

When COVID-19’s spread resulted in mandatory quarantine for many, a lot of people who once worked side-by-side in person were forced to work from home.

Considering that film production requires many people to work alongside each other in very close proximity, it was no surprise that many aspects of film production were altered or halted altogether.

The process of filming on a set, of course, came to a complete halt when cast and crew members had to go into quarantine during the lockdowns that took place. Films that were in the middle of, or that were about to begin, production were delayed or cancelled.

Preproduction and postproduction looked a little different for a while.

While filming on set was prohibited, crew members were still able to work from home on pre-and-post-production.

Writers and directors worked on scripts for films and shows that were not yet in the filming stage when COVID-19 hit. Shows and movies that had wrapped up filming before the quarantine were being edited by crew members from home.

The release of films took a significant hit.

Not only did the film industry take a hit due to delayed production and filming, it also took a hit due to delayed releases.

Movie theaters across the country were closed when new rules were passed prohibiting any non-essential establishments from staying open during the worst of the outbreak. Because of this, some major films’ releases were significantly delayed.

A few studios decided to release the films on digital streaming services, although this decision was met with mixed responses, as those who were already paying for the streaming service were having to pay extra to see the movie when it released.

For example, when Disney released its live-action remake of Mulan back in July, the studio charged $30 to watch the film on Disney Plus when it first came out.

Of course, those who already had the service were given the option of waiting a bit for it to be included with the service for no extra charge. But many were unhappy with the expensive cost, that was more than the usual movie ticket.

How cast and crew members are now staying safe during film production.

As restrictions began to ease up across the country, the Association of Independent Commercial Producers (aka the AICP) put out safety procedures and guidelines in May of 2020 for work and production sites that were starting to resume business.

After that, on June 1, a group of studios and unions released a report containing suggestions for health and safety guidelines for film sets and productions.

Finally, on June 8, the governor of California announced that filming could resume on (or after) June 12. But, of course, there are still safety guidelines put in place in order to keep the cast and crew healthy.

When not filming, all cast and crew members must wear a face covering.

One of the main changes COVID-19 has brought about is that many establishments and workplaces require masks to be worn at (almost) all times. Film sets are no exception to this.

Unless an actor is filming a scene, every single person involved in production must be wearing a mask or some other form of face covering. The reason for this is, of course, film production requires a lot of people to be working close to each other. Masks help prevent germs and unknown sicknesses from spreading.

Cast and crew members must practice social distancing “whenever possible.”

Of course, some scenes or aspects of production are going to require the people involved to be close to one another.

But, when possible, the cast and crew should follow social distancing requirements. Staying six feet away and avoiding unnecessary physical contact helps slow the spread.

Studios have to gain approval from a public health officer.

In order for filming to resume, a public health officer must inspect the set to make sure that conditions are safe and that health guidelines are being (or will be) followed. They make sure that things are being kept clean and that the cast and crew are following the aforementioned guidelines. If they do not approve of the conditions, filming cannot begin.

COVID-19 has certainly brought a lot of changes overall. But, slowly but surely, things will hopefully start to look normal again.

Film productions resuming is a step in that direction. And at 2Bridges, we ensure all our video production projects are conducted in the safest manner.

 
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