The soap downed tools on March 18th over the coronavirus pandemic.
Production on EastEnders was put on hold in mid-March
EastEnders, like all other continuing dramas, is pre-recorded a number of weeks in advance which has allowed the Beeb to continue airing new episodes. A reduction in episodes from four to two a week has kept the BBC One soap on air for longer than would otherwise have been the case, although it is likely that there will be a gap between all of the episodes being used up and newly-filmed ones reaching the screen.
Addressing a resumption of filming, the corporation’s director of content Charlotte Moore told The Telegraph that it could be within weeks.
“We’ve been looking carefully at how we can safely put some of our shows back into production, and I’m pleased to announce that we plan to begin filming again on both EastEnders and Top Gear by the end of June,” she wrote in The Daily Telegraph.
Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content
Moore added that artistes will be responsible for their own hair and make-up and that “social distancing measures will be in place”.
The prime minister Boris Johnson told the nation on Sunday that people who cannot work from home should look at returning to their workplace, which their employer would be expected to make “COVID19 secure”.
The department for Digital Culture, Media and Sport confirmed that film and TV production is permissible as long as social distancing rules are implemented and followed.
“The government is working closely with the screen sector to understand how different types of productions can comply with social-distancing guidelines, and give confidence to people in the TV and film industries that there are safe ways in which they can return to work.” – DCMS spokesperson
BBC News notes that EastEnders will address the coronavirus pandemic but “not in a prominent way”.
EastEnders is filmed at the BBC Elstree Centre in Borehamwood. The studios were formerly owned by ATV.