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COVID-19 lands on ‘Love Island’: Five on set test positive

Five people on the set of “Love Island” tested positive for COVID-19 over the weekend.

Hawaii Film Commissioner Donne Dawson confirmed Monday that between Friday and Saturday, five people on the set of CBS reality TV show tested positive for the coronavirus and have since been quarantined.

“The Department of Health has been notified, and they’ve done contact tracing,” Dawson said. “There’s a whole COVID protocol we have, and it’s super strict.”

Dawson could not confirm whether “Love Island” production company ITV Entertainment has imposed a vaccine mandate for the show’s approximately 300 crew members, but added that the company has gone “over and above” the Hawaii Film Office’s coronavirus safety standards.

With only five people confirmed to be infected, Dawson said the outbreak is “manageable” and that all production members, including those infected, will continue to be regularly tested for COVID-19 throughout the end of the shoot.

A representative of ITV gave the following statement: “Love Island Season 3 has gone beyond both the (U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and union ‘return to work’ COVID guidelines for production, including high-frequency testing (2-3 times per week), (personal protective equipment) for everyone not on camera, contact tracing and quarantine protocols. Production also has been in constant contact with state and local officials per their respective health guidelines. The health and safety of our cast and crew remains our number one priority.”

Paul Beighley, who lives next door to Waterfalling Estate in Ninole, the primary “Love Island” shooting location, said he believed he saw crew members occasionally wearing masks improperly over the weekend, but added that he couldn’t be sure. In any case, Beighley said nobody from ITV informed him about the outbreak.

Beyond that, Beighley said he has observed no changes in the activity of the production. Beighley and his wife, Michelle Betz, have been disrupted by the production’s loud noises and bright lights since production began in July and have filed multiple complaints with the Hawaii Film Office and the Hawaii County Planning Department, to limited avail. In response to their complaints, Betz said ITV has offered the couple an undisclosed sum of money, but she said they declined, instead asking for an apology from ITV, a promise from the company to be more mindful in the future, and an anonymous donation to the local community.

Betz said there has been no response to that request so far.

Dawson said the last day of production is Saturday. The final episode of “Love Island” airs Aug. 15.

Email Michael Brestovansky at mbrestovansky@hawaiitribune-herald.com.
Source: Hawaii Tribune Herald

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