The Indian Films & TV Producers Council (IFTPC) on Sunday said producers of all shows have been asked to get their crew tested for COVID-19 as per the recent guidelines. The entertainment sector has been badly hit due to the rising COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra, particularly Mumbai, which is home to Hindi film and television industry.
In a statement, the IFTPC said the producers of 90 TV shows were asked to conduct RT-PCR/Antigen tests on their entire crew. Following the directive, the IFTPC received confirmation that more than 9000 tests were conducted. The tests will be repeated after 15 days as per the ‘Break the Chain’ guidelines. The IFTPC mandated that “antigen tests shall be done every week for additional safety”.
Actor-producer JD Majethia, Chairman TV & Web wing, said the broadcasters have borne the cost of the tests and are ensuring that all the guidelines are being followed. “The producers have been urged to create a bio-bubble of the sets and post production facilities for total safety… The work on bio-bubble has already commenced and will fructify in couple of days,” the statement added.
In recent days, several on-ground productions like “Ram Setu”, “Gangubai Kathiawadi” and Dharma Productions-backed “Mr Lele” had to their shoots after actors, including Akshay Kumar, Alia Bhatt, Vicky Kaushal and Bhumi Pednekar tested positive for coronavirus. Apart from the actors, as many as 45 members of Kumar’s “Ram Setu”, have also tested positive for the novel coronavirus.
The Federation of Western India Cine Employees (FWICE) recently formed a “monitoring team” to ensure that all COVID-19 shooting guidelines — including safety precautions on set, avoiding filming of crowd sequences– are strictly followed.