Covid-19’s Movie and TV Impact

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During the pandemic, many people cannot do some of the things they like most. They might not feel safe about restaurant eating or gym workouts. They also can’t go to movies in many states.

While Covid-19 affects virtually every niche and profession, Hollywood is experiencing unprecedented upheaval. The movie and TV industries are dealing with it in different ways, and it’s fascinating to see it unfold.

Let’s take a look at the current movie and TV business strategies.

Theaters Are Not Releasing New Movies

If you want to take some time catching up on the best motorcycle movies or the best crime sagas, now is the time to do it since you’re not missing anything at your local multiplex. That’s because:

  • Many movie theaters remain closed
  • Open theaters are not getting new releases

A couple of states have some theaters open, but in most of the country’s regions, they remain closed. That is because medical experts fear Covid-19 movie theater circulation. If one person has it, and they sneeze or cough, a single movie showing can become a super spreader event.

Hollywood has what would have been all the 2020 blockbusters ready to go, but they’re not releasing them. They keep pushing back the new James Bond movie, Wonder Woman 1984, Dune, and others.

What Will This Mean for Movies Going Forward?

It’s not completely clear how the movie industry will weather this storm in the coming months and years. We do know that:

  • The industry has lost a ton of money this year
  • They are delaying shooting many new projects

The uncertainty is what’s making things so complicated. If medical experts could give a particular date when they will have a vaccine, Hollywood might feel a little better about its prospects. However, that simply isn’t the case.

Some studios are trying to shoot movies that they want to release in 2021 or 2022, but it’s risky. They’re spending money to pay actors, crew members, stuntpeople, etc., and they’re seeing no profit return at all.

What About TV?

Some TV shows have come back this fall season, including some live-action ones. You have popular ones like Grey’s Anatomy and Law and Order: SVU. These long-running fan favorites shot during the pandemic, and fans are glad to see them back.

However, it was a risk for studios to shoot these shows. Most of them have not reported any major stars contracting Covid-19, but the risk was there, and it still is. That’s why many shows are trying to shoot in remote locations or on closed sets where they can attempt to regulate any possible danger as much as possible.

How Can TV Create Shows Safely?

The TV shows that Hollywood can make more safely than others right now include animated fare such as The Simpsons, Family Guy, Bless the Harts, etc. The actors can do their voice work from studios with no one else around, and they can do virtual table reads rather than gathering together in person.

We could see more animation and fewer live-action shows if we fail to get the pandemic under control soon. We’ll have to see how quickly America and the rest of the world can produce and distribute a vaccine.

Hollywood’s Future

Everyone expects that we’ll have a vaccine at some point and things will return to normal, or something like it. But even if we see that happen, it might not be for another year, or even later.

Most developmental projects have to remain in a virtual holding pattern. That means many shows and movies can’t shoot, though writers, producers, and directors can at least work on the scripts and try to cast actors for the parts.

It seems as though when the movie industry roars back to life, there will be more would-be blockbusters than ever before competing for market share. We might see a whole year or two worth of potential blockbusters released in just a few months. The studios need to do that to clear the way for upcoming projects.

Studios have already lost money, and they’re going to lose more. They can’t avoid it, like what’s happening with airlines right now.  

We could see major production companies close down. It’s also possible that some people who can’t go to movies right now won’t even want to go back when they have that option again.

In short, it’s a tumultuous time in Hollywood, and there’s tremendous uncertainty among producers, actors, studio heads, and all others in this particular industry.   

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