Bulgarian Film Commission

Till Death - The First Feature to Shoot Under Covid19

Till Death was shot in Bulgaria from August 6, 2020 to September 7, 2020 being one of the first projects to resume production after the coronavirus pandemic lockdown in the spring. It wrapped Covid-19 free after 28 days of shoot. There was a lot of preparation on behalf of the production team to make it possible.

Megan Fox and Callan Mulvey shooting Till Death. Photos courtesy of Millennium Media

Production was initially scheduled to start in March 2020 at Nu Boyana Film Studios in Sofia, Bulgaria. But beginning of March the world experienced the first lockdown by the Covid-19 global pandemic. All film production stopped. Director S.K. Dale and the project’s team had to cancel all plans and begin setting up protocols and safety guidelines in place for a potential restart in a few months. The team wisely used the lockdown time to analyse how to safely resume production.

The Bulgarian crews adapted quickly to the new pandemic environment.

“The big question was: How do you make everything safe?” - says producer Les Weldon and adds that it was not an easy task. “You try to imagine things that you’ve never had to deal with before, you try to picture situations where people have to work together and how do you socially distance them? You are trying to figure out: How do we test everybody?” - Weldon adds.

Yariv Lerner, CEO of Nu Boyana Film Studios where the production was based remembers: “The news was coming every day and changing constantly. We went through a massive shift of how we operate, implementing all safety measures and guidelines.” 

Along the way the production team worked very close with SAG, with the government and the National Film Centre in Bulgaria as well as with a lot of international medical professionals. With all the guidelines provided, the production managed to create their own, even more stringent protocols, designed to be as efficient as possible. 

“We really can’t credit the Bulgarian government enough for working with us, recognising how important this industry is for the economy in the country, and how important it is for them to work hand in hand with us to be able to get everyone in,” says producer Jeffrey Greenstein/Millennium Media.

The crew at Nu Boyana studios underwent training with the new protocols before they started shooting, so that when a slowdown would happen during production, they would know how to react fast. This crew has been working together for many years. They understood that everyone had to be as safe as possible, that they had to prove not only to themselves but to the industry that they could put a film together safely.

The everyday set life was: everyone wearing masks; people were demanded to stay at least 6ft apart at all times, as much as possible; the set was limited only to essential personnel. There was a zone system in place, only allowing essential people around the actors. In terms of catering - individual lunches for people. And the big thing was: testing - as often as possible.

Till Death is directed by S.K.Dale, Starring: Megan Fox, Eoin Macken, Callan Mulvey, Jack Roth. The film is produced by Millennium Media and was released on July 1, 2021.

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