How many lockdown episodes of Emmerdale will there be and who is in them?
Emmerdale has become the first of the big soaps to resume filming in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, joining all the major productions in suspending production as the UK went into lockdown.
The first of those new episodes airs tonight – and it’s pretty timely, kicking off a bunch of special instalments focusing on some of the soap’s biggest characters as they get to grips with lockdown.
Sam (James Hooton) and Lydia (Karen Blick) take centre stage tonight, with the episodes ensuring that Emmerdale will remain on the air in spite of the break in filming, as production continues with new safety measures in place.
But how many specials are there, when are they on – and how are they filming them under the new social distancing requirements?
How many new episodes of Emmerdale will there be?
There are going to be six new episodes of Emmerdale, each focusing on different characters as they cope with coronavirus lockdown.
The episodes will feature the following characters:
- Cain and Aaron (Jeff Hordley and Danny Miller)
- Chas and Paddy (Lucy Pargeter and Dominic Brunt)
- Sam and Lydia (James Hooton and Karen Blick)
- Marlon, Al and Ellis (Mark Charnock, Michael Wildman, Aaron Anthony)
- Mandy and Vinny (Lisa Riley and Bradley Johnson)
- Jimmy and Nicola (Nick Miles and Nicola Wheeler)
These episodes were recorded over a two-week period, with filming having started on Wednesday, 20 May.
Executive Producer Jane Hudson announced the return to the Leeds set in a video posted on Emmerdale’s social media accounts — which was simply captioned with: ‘We. Are. BACK’ — where she spoke about the soap’s exciting return to filming.
She said: ‘Hi everyone, we’re back on set today! Back with Emmerdale, shooting our very special lockdown episodes.’
New ways of working with the cast and crew have been introduced by ITV Studios in accordance with pan-industry return to production protocols for TV drama, which their health and safety team and medical advisers have been working on in consultation with the Government.
Those measures include social distancing, film units staying together to work in designated studios with crew using their own, sanitised, equipment, office staff continuing to work remotely to ensure fewer people on the ground, no location filming, scripts featuring fewer actors and longer scenes to cut down on camera moves.
The crew also attended a meeting with the company’s medical adviser, and took part in a health and safety induction which laid out the new working practices in detail.
Emmerdale continues on Monday night on ITV at 7pm.
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