Yet another television series has reportedly halted production due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis. On Monday, it was reported that Saturday Night Live has postponed the next three shows of the season, as Variety noted. The next episode of the season was due to air on March 28 with host John Krasinski and musical guest Dua Lipa.
Due to the fact that SNL films in front of a live studio audience in New York City, it's easy to see why the show has reportedly decided to postpone its upcoming three episodes. With this postponement news, SNL has become one of the many television shows that have halted production because of the rising concerns surrounding this global health pandemic. For example, the production on many other shows on NBC, the network on which SNL airs, have either been postponed or stopped completely for their current seasons.
According to Deadline, Dick Wolf's dramas, Chicago Fire, Chicago Med, and Chicago P.D. have wrapped production early on their current seasons. Shows such as Superstore and New Amsterdam have also halted production.
"The safety and health of our cast, crew and employees is our top priority," NBC Universal said in a statement Thursday night. "Where possible, we are pausing production for two weeks as a precautionary measure, following which we will reassess and determine an appropriate start date. In some cases, we are accelerating plans to wrap up physical production."
These cancellations and postponements come as President Donald Trump has declared a national emergency due to the rising concerns surrounding the coronavirus. In a press conference on Friday, the president said that he would be enacting the Stafford Act, which enables him to increase funding to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
"To unleash the full power of the federal government in this effort today, I am officially declaring a national emergency," Trump said Friday afternoon. "Two very big words. The action I am taking will open up access to $50 billion... for states and territories and localities in our shared fight against this disease."
At the time, he also urged all states to set up emergency response centers and asked that hospitals ensure that emergency preparedness procedures are in place so that they can "meet the needs of Americans everywhere."
In another press conference on Monday, Trump shared more updates regarding the response to this crisis. While there is no clear end date in sight to all of these measures, the president noted that these new health and safety efforts could be in place through July or August.