Countdown has been filmed without a live studio audience due to coronavirus concerns, Channel 4 has confirmed. In a statement to HELLO!, they said: "Acting on PHE advice Countdown was filmed without an audience earlier this week." While it has been widely reported that this is the first time that the classic show has gone ahead without an audience, the series was previously filmed without an audience due to a snowstorm some years ago.
Countdown will air without a live studio audience
The show is just one of many to have changed following the coronavirus outbreak, as Ant and Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway will also be going ahead without a live audience. Speaking about the show, a spokesperson said: "Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway will go ahead this weekend without a studio audience. Our priority is safeguarding the well-being of everyone involved. The show will be made with a reduced production crew and in accordance with the latest guidance from Public Health England. The team are looking forward to bringing our viewers a brilliant show on Saturday evening."
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Meanwhile, other series including Peaky Blinders, Line of Duty and EastEnders have paused filming during the pandemic. The official account for Peaky Blinders, which stars Cillian Murphy and Helen McCrory, tweeted: "After much consideration, and in light of the developing situation concerning Covid-19, the start of production of Peaky Blinders Series 6 has been postponed. Huge thanks to our incredible cast and crew, and to all our amazing fans for their continued support."
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Meanwhile, the statement from EastEnders read: "In light of the spread of Covid-19, after much consideration, it has been decided that filming on EastEnders will be postponed until further notice. The decision was made after the latest government update. We will continue to follow the latest news and advice from the World Health Organisation and Public Health England. We have also taken the decision to reduce the amount of episodes we broadcast each week to two, so that we can ensure the audience can continue to enjoy EastEnders in their homes for as long as possible."
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