LOS ANGELES (AP) – The legal drama “All Rise” became the first scripted television series in the United States to adapt to the pandemic by produce an episode remotely, by enlisting its stars to work from home on their own makeup, scenography and lighting.
The season finale, which airs Monday night on CBS, finds Simone Missick’s judge Lola Carmichael presiding over a trial in Los Angeles Superior Court via video conference.
Missick said she was exhausted at the end of each day of filming after making her own costume and sound adjustments, turning her living room into an office and her dining room into a courtroom.
“I learned new skills. I think I could be a localization scout-slash-set design coordinator. I don’t need to run the department, but I could be in the background, ”Missick said with a laugh in a Zoom interview. “So if that acting thing doesn’t work, maybe I could make a career out of doing it virtually because that was the fun part.”
While most full-season shows cut production short due to home orders, “All Rise” creator Greg Spottiswood said he realized that the dialogue-rich nature of his program allowed remote production. A key challenge – predicting how the legal world would adapt to the novel coronavirus, with prisons becoming hotspots for epidemics and video chats replacing court hearings.
“The justice system needs to find a way to respond at this time. Technology is one of the ways they react to it, ”he said.
Spottiswood said the producers paid the entire crew, even those who weren’t able to work, for the episode. While the series could produce more episodes remotely in a second season if needed, he’s eager to return to real-world sets and locations.
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Missick said her stepmother in Atlanta had been hospitalized with COVID-19 for eight days, with symptoms severe enough to require a ventilator. She had made a full recovery by the time Missick started filming, but it brought the coronavirus crisis close to home for the 38-year-old actress.
In her post-production downtime, Missick enjoyed Hulu’s “Little Fires Everywhere” and the Netflix series “Unorthodox”. But she was struck by the distance between the action on screen and today’s reality.
“It’s all in British Columbia. It is “before the coronavirus”. You look at people – they’re in restaurants, they’re cuddling. You’re like, ‘God, I remember how it was.’ Now I think every show that follows will have to deal with what this pandemic is. “
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