Covid outbreaks hit movie studios, TV production hard in LA County – Deadline

In recent months, the entertainment industry has been one of the hardest hit — if not THE hardest hit — sectors in Los Angeles, consistently recording the highest number of Covid outbreaks in the county.

As studios lock in new work dates for employees, at least three lots are seeing significant outbreaks, with other clusters at a studio headquarters, TV production, production facility and performing arts venue. In total, they account for about 18% of the total number of currently recorded non-medical outbreaks at businesses in the province, per official.

The good news is that percentage is even lower than last month, when the entertainment industry was responsible for 20% of the outbreaks. The bad news is that the total number of infections it represents is much higher. In fact, last week there were 108 clusters across all work sites and this week the total rose to 140, by province.

Cases have risen across the board in Los Angeles, with the average number of daily infections at about 2,400 today, according to a briefing from the provincial public health department. That stat is up 20% in the past week, notable for a number averaged over seven days to smooth out temporary fluctuations.

Topping the list of showbiz-related outbreaks is Lionsgate. The Santa Monica headquarters is showing a total of 21 cases this week. That puts it second in the entire country in terms of workers infected, behind a Lancaster motorhome and motorhome manufacturer. At the end of last month, Lionsgate had a cluster of 6 infections.

A source familiar with the situation tells Deadline that 12 of those 21 cases at Lionsgate were among employees returning from CinemaCon in Las Vegas. The company would have mandatory vaccinations for employees and make face masks in the office if there are active cases.

In a weekly briefing on Los Angeles County’s Covid status last month, Barbara Ferrer, director of public health, noted that while the entertainment industry’s total is higher than other sectors, it may be because movie and TV productions are slightly do right, not do anything wrong.

“This could be due to an overall increase in the number of cases, as we’ve seen in the community, as well as the extensive screening protocols this industry uses,” Ferrer noted.

One much hit by outbreaks in recent times is Sony, which has been on the county’s list several times during the pandemic. In August 2021, Sony saw a cluster of three cases. Last month there were three separate outbreaks on the plot, representing a total of 15 infections. This week, the Culver City studio reported two clusters, for a total of nine cases.

The county’s current outbreak list includes a Fox Entertainment – Television Production entry with five cases recorded. In January, Fox saw more than a dozen infections at its Fox Sports and Fox Sports Deportes units in West LA

See the full list of current, recorded Covid clusters in the entertainment industry below.

The Burbank Studios 5 cases

Dorothy Chandler Pavilion 9 cases

Fox Entertainment – ​​Television Production 5 cases

Lionsgate Entertainment 21 cases

Sony Pictures Studios – Stage 24 4 cases

Sony Pictures Studios – Bowtruss Bldg. 5 cases

Universal Studios Hollywood – Lot Bldg. 4407 3 cases

Universal Studios Hollywood – Destiny P526 Trailer 5 cases

Warner Bros. Studios – Bldg 128 5 cases

Warner Bros. Studios – Stages 27 and 29 5 cases

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