While many television and movie production is shutting down due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, Conan O’Brien and his team have found a novel way of continuing production of his show, and a way to have some fun with it. “Conan” was supposed to be on hiatus this week as the production team figured out what to do, but the team had other ideas.
Conan says he’ll shoot on an iPhone and that his guests will Skype in. His crew will work from their homes.
I am going back on the air Monday, March 30th. All my staff will work from home, I will shoot at home using an iPhone, and my guests will Skype. This will not be pretty, but feel free to laugh at our attempt. Stay safe.
— Conan O'Brien (@ConanOBrien) March 19, 2020
O’Brien “likes to work. He likes to make stuff – as we all do. We are in the business of making content and this what we do. The idea that we can’t do it is a little frustrating,” says Jeff Ross, the late-night host’s executive producer, says Variety. “We have a staff that wants to work, that doesn’t want to not get paid, and you just want to keep the business going.”
“The quality of my work will not go down because technically that’s not possible,” joked O’Brien in a statement.
The entertainment industry has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, with live talk shows being hit especially hard, as many are shot in large studios in front of a live audience. Some shows have shut down production entirely, while others, like The View, have continued production sans audience.
Stephen Colbert and Jimmy Fallon will also begin filming new material, which they’ll mix in with existing material to fill their time slots.