Paramount+ has been forced to shut down production on its popular series Star Trek: Picard due to a “sizable” COVID-19 outbreak.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the Patrick Stewart-led series has one of television’s biggest crews, and more than 50 members of the show’s 450+ staffers tested positive on Monday, which was the first day of work following the holiday break.
THR’s sources say the infections impacted multiple zones, including cast in zone A. The decision was quickly made to shut down production on Monday, and filming is expected to resume early next week.
Star Trek: Picard is hardly the only show impacted by the high transmission rate of the Omicron variant, as NCIS paused production this week due to a positive COVID test, which was believed to be a member of the cast. That one case delayed filming until next week, and Fox’s 9-1-1 also opted to start shooting next week as opposed to this week. Likewise, ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy and Station 19 pushed their production starts from Jan. 10 to Jan. 12, and the network also confirmed that production on The Rookie has also been postponed. Elsewhere, production on the CBS series NCIS: LA was pushed back from late January to February. Are you sensing a pattern?
Most of these shows are primarily shot in Los Angeles County, where COVID-19 cases have been skyrocketing. The Sundance Film Festival even decided to go all-virtual again this year, as it could not in good conscience risk a public health scare in a mountain town ill-equipped to handle 100,000 visitors from a viral hot zone. Between Dec. 31 and Jan. 3, California reported an average of 59,000 cases a day.
Star Trek: Picard hails from CBS Studios and producer Alex Kurtzman as well as showrunners Akiva Goldsman and Terry Matalas. In addition to Stewart, the series stars Alison Pill, Orla Brady, Isa Briones, Santiago Cabrera, Evan Evagora, Michelle Hurd, John de Lancie, Jeri Ryan, Brent Spiner, and Annie Wersching.