CBS has temporarily shut down production of Season 33 of “The Amazing Race” amid the increasing number of cases of coronavirus worldwide, Variety has learned exclusively. The move was undertaken “out of an abundance of caution,” as the respiratory virus has not impacted anyone directly involved with the show.
“Due to increased concerns and uncertainty regarding the coronavirus around the world, CBS and the producers of ‘The Amazing Race’ have taken the precautionary measure of temporarily suspending production on the 33rd season of the series,” a CBS spokesperson told Variety.
“All contestants and production staff are in the process of returning home,” said the statement. “At this time, no Racers or anyone on the production team travelling with them have contracted the virus, or shown symptoms, and we are not aware of anyone being exposed to it. Out of an abundance of caution, everyone involved in the show will continue to be monitored when they return home. The health and well-being of the Racers and the production team are our top priorities.”
The 33rd season of the global unscripted competition series — which had not yet been announced — was only a couple of weeks into production. Three episodes had been filmed thus far, according to a source, and the contestants had visited England and Scotland prior to the suspension of the production. Season 32, the upcoming season, has already been filmed and completed, though it does not yet have a premiere date.
No new production start date for Season 33 has been determined.
“The Amazing Race” is one of the first U.S. television productions to be waylaid by the pandemic, given its global filming locations, but it is far from the only project that has been impacted.
Premieres of Disney’s “Mulan” and the newest James Bond film, “No Time to Die,” have been canceled in China, and Italian releases of several upcoming films may also be delayed in reaction to the spread of coronavirus. BTS and Green Day have canceled or postponed upcoming concerts, and Disney theme parks in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo have been temporarily shuttered due to concerns for public health and safety. The next major global event — the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo this summer — remains a question mark as Japan’s schools are closed for a month and the world’s leaders grapple with how to contain the virus.