Tyler Perry is working hard to reopen his sprawling Atlanta studio in July and plans to resume filming on several projects amid the COVID-19 crisis.
On Wednesday, he detailed the steps he will take to ensure everyone’s safety in a 30-page document entitled “Camp Quarantine.” In it, he outlines plans to have the cast and crew of Sistas and The Oval stay on the enormous campus as they go into production.
Perry plans to have the casts tested for COVID-19 using a nasal swab test 16 days before they plan to travel to the studio. After the test, they’re expected to self-isolate at home while they await their travel date.
Perry promised to provide private flights to Atlanta where they would undergo a rapid test from Abbot Labs that can return results in 15 minutes when they get into the car at the airport.
Face masks are required of everyone involved and all luggage will be sanitized before being unloaded at the studio’s campus. Upon arrival at the studio, everyone will be tested again; this time by medical staff from Emory Healthcare.
“Once inside the quarantine bubble, participants are not permitted to leave for the entire 14-day period,” it reads.
The cast and crew will continue to undergo COVID-19 testing throughout their stay and it’s clear Perry is taking the health and safety of his team very seriously.
The document also included a letter to the cast:
I couldn’t start this letter without first saying that our hearts, souls and minds stand with all those who have lost loved ones during this challenging time in our world. I’d also like you know that we stand firmly with our frontline workers. They are the true superstars in all of this.
It seems that there isn’t a person on this planet that hasn’t been affected by COVID19 in some way. I know I have, at the beginning of this pandemic we lost an amazing crew member. His name is Charles Gregory Ross and he came down with symptoms a few days after wrapping on another production and died a few weeks later. He put a face to the horrors of this virus for me. As my crew and I had been working with him on and off for over 15 years, it affects us all deeply as you could imagine. It’s still hard to believe.
It is with that sobering reality and the understanding that African Americans are disproportionately affected by this virus in vast numbers, and also knowing that my cast and crew members are largely African American — that we came up with this plan to return to work safely.
I want it to be abundantly clear that there was no way I could or would consider putting people back to work without a plan that takes extreme measures to try and mitigate as much risk as possible in our productions, and I think we’ve managed to do just that.
It took a village of staff, medical doctors, epidemiologists, lawyers, union reps, talent and their reps, crew members, insurers, and a lot of other great thinkers to come up with this plan.
I have personally been in touch with union reps and they have let me know that there is a collective union and guild guideline plan that is coming soon. My team and I will gladly be sure to implement these updates into our existing plan when available.
What is most clear about this plan, is that the union and guild reps, myself and everyone else involved all want the same thing, and that is the safety of our cast and crew as we return to work. With that all said here, below is an overview of the plan. More extensive details may be found in the deck.
Thank you for your time and consideration,