US talk shows to be filmed without studio audiences due to coronavirus

Jimmy Fallon stands on his chair as he is introduced to the crowd during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game be
Jimmy Fallon stands on his chair as he is introduced to the crowd during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game between Syracuse and North Carolina in Syracuse, N.Y., Saturday, Feb. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)

The ripple effect of the coronavirus on the entertainment industry has reached late-night US television.

The Tonight Show and other late-night talk shows in New York announced on Wednesday they will be recorded without studio audiences, while CBS said that production on the next season of Survivor was being postponed.

NBC said it was suspending live audiences for Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show and Late Night With Seth Meyers starting on Monday, citing the safety of guests and employees as the “top priority”.

The MET Gala 2018 – New York
Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon’s shows are both affected (Ian West/PA)


CBS announced that The Late Show with Stephen Colbert will also tape without an in-studio audience, as did Comedy Central’s The Daily Show With Trevor Noah and HBO’s Last Week Tonight With John Oliver.

“For the past several weeks, The Late Show producers have consulted daily to share information with other New York-based late night shows, who will also be moving forward without an audience,” CBS said in a statement.

The shows’ broadcasts will be unaffected.

Also on Wednesday, CBS said production on the 41st edition of Survivor has been postponed in response to the spread of the coronavirus. Filming was scheduled to begin later this month in Fiji but CBS now says production will start on May 19.

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