'General Hospital' to Resume Filming New Episodes This July

It had been announced that General Hospital plans to resume filming new episodes this July. According to TV Line, the hit daytime soap is going to restart production sometime in July, but no specific date was provided. The last new episode of General Hospital that aired was in May.

As has been the case with nearly all of film and TV production, General Hospital shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic, when "stay at home" orders began rolling out nationwide in March. CBS soap The Bold and the Beautiful resumed production on June 17, which marked the first time a scripted series on resumed production on U.S. soil, following the three-month shutdown. Unfortunately, the show had to temporarily halt production again, due to false positives in Covid-19 tests. They decided to contact with a new testing agency after the incidents.

Notably, NBC soap Days of Our Lives reportedly has enough original episodes already filmed that it may not have to resume production until the fall. Earlier in June, L.A. County issued guidelines for "Reopening Protocol for Music, Television and Film Production." The protocols included require all cast and crew members to wear cloth face coverings whenever they are in close proximity with others. Actors have partial exemption from this rule, however, but only in the event that they are filming a scene that does not call for it.

General Hospital has been airing on ABC since 1963, and is the longest-running serial produced in Hollywood, as well as the longest-running entertainment program in ABC television history. Additionally, it holds the record for most Daytime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Drama Series, with 13 total wins. After ABC canceled both All My Children and One Life to Live, that left General Hospital as the last remaining soap for the network. The show was originally created by Frank and Doris Hursley, husband-and-wife soap writers, and is currently executive produced by Frank Valentini.

In 2018, Valentini spoke to Soap Opera Digest about the show's longevity, saying that when the show celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2013, he "wasn’t sure" if it would ever see 55. "The daytime picture wasn’t as rosy as it is right now. Having come off of GUIDING LIGHT, AS THE WORLD TURNS, ONE LIFE TO LIVE and ALL MY CHILDREN being canceled, things looked kind of bleak," Valentini said, "so that’s why we sort of poured everything we had into the 50th anniversary. I thought, 'This could be our last party.' Thankfully it wasn’t, but you never know."